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LIFE, in San Francisco, is intense, and has marked pecul- 
iarities. It is not passive in a single particular. The 
manners, customs, business, and pleasure of the people, are 
opposed to inactivity, at all seasons and in all things. 

The growth of San Francisco has been rapid; perhaps, 
unprecedented. The exciting causes that led to this, have 
formed her characteristics. There is some romance surround- 
ing her development; and, mingled in it, there "was much vivid 
reality. But it has been purely San Franciscan. 

The purpose of this volume is to give, in an associated form, 
sketches of the peculiar characteristics of this young metrop- 
olis; to make prominent her individuality; to show the reader 
San Francisco as she is to-day, and in doing this, give him, 
also, some insight into the causes that led to so rapid a growth. 

Much that this volume contains has been previously offered 
to the public, in print; so, therefore, we make no claim to 
originality. "VVe have simply revived, and endeavored to 
renew. It has been our aim to treat only those subjects that 
are of interest to all, and present them in a concise and terse 
style. How we have succeeded, the reader must judge. 

The Author. 

San Feancisco, September 1, 1876. 



Lights and Shades Frontispiece 

Palace Hotel 50 

Cliff-House and Seal Kocks 71 

Intekiob of the Geeat Steel Vault (Safe Deposit Company) ... 88 

Mercantile Library Building 116 

Interior View of Wade's Opera House 146 

View of Clay Street showing the Wire Kaileoad 175 

Eepresentative Chinese 218 

Interior of Chinese Theatre 244: 

View of Gods in Chinese ' ' Joss ' ' House 269 

Bancroft's Building — Sectional View 294 

View in Woodward's Gardens 325 

" Git Your Razors' Ground " 357 

The " Baldwin " — Hotel and Academy of Music 376 

The U. S. Mint 397 

The " CoLiMA " of the P. M. S. S. Co.'s Fleet 423 

The Denman School Building 472 

The "First School House " 476 

The Old Mission Dolores 501 

The Mission Dolores — Eestoked 501 

Departure of Steamer — Steamer-Day 522 

Golden Gate (Vignette) 16 































































TEE Elite. 

BLE FUNERAL 108 -1 11 






LIBRARIES 116-120 






CIALLY 126-131 













XXII. ^ 






ANCE TO ALL 159-lGl 















GROCERIES 180-185 















COUNTRY 208-217 

















^^-^^ # ^ 










CH^JSTIA^^ZING the heathen — the work of the churches of 















HARTE's ' ' FIRST " POEM 301-307 


















ENCE 336-339 






BATH 343-348 

















CEMETERY 364—368 





SIC 3G9-37C 






















ELAINE 414-419 


SAN Francisco's photographers 420-422 













DEFENSE 430-442 




CESs 443-448 










H. DKYOUNG 353-4G7 



























STREET AT NIGHT 488' -491 







ING " STEAMER-DAY " 499-523 

Lights and Shades in San Francisco, 









SAN FEANCISCO is of considerable antiquity. On the 
17tli of September, 1776, the presidio of San Francisco 
was founded. On the 9th of the following month, the mission 
"De los Dolores de Nuestro Padre San Francisco de Asis" 
"was established. This mission was named in honor of Saint 
Francis of Assisi, the founder of the order of Franciscans, In 
remembrance of his sufferings the mission itself was commonly 
known as the " Mission Dolores," while the presidio and fort 
kept the Saint's name. The mission system adopted by these 
early Fathers was for the conversion of the native Indians. 
The presidios were for defense. Parts of the old Mission 
Dolores are standing to-day — some of the outer adobe walls 
2 (17) 


a.iKl patches of tbe interior fiuisli. The presidio was fin en- 
closure of about three hundred yards square, surrounded by 
an adobe wall from ten to twelve feet high. Part of the wall 
3'et remains, a reminder of those early days. It has always- 
been a matter of doubt whether San Francisco was ever a 
pueblo. In the early American career of the city, this was a 
subject of much dispute. The Supreme Court of the State, 
and also the Federal Court of the district, however, decided 
that it was. 

From 1779 to 1830 San Francisco enjoyed an undisturbed 
repose; a sort of " Sleepy Hollow" drowsiness reigned supreme 
over all its inhabitants, the dull monotony of which was only 
disturbed by an occasional visit from exploring or trading ves- 
sels, drifting, as it were, almost by accident up the channel, 
through the Golden Gate. Among these vessels were the 
American ships Alexander and Aser, which entered the harbor 
on the 1st of August, 1803. In 1807 the Russians made their 

That there was little of the spirit of progression and enter- 
prise among the population is very evident. In 1884, more 
than fifty years after its founding, San Francisco, or the Mis- 
sion Dolores, had only a pojDulation of five hundred Indians. 
Their possessions were five thousand horned cattle, one thou- 
sand six hundred horses and mules, four thousand sheep, 
goats and hogs, and two thousand five hundred bushels of 

On July 8, 1846, the American flag was hoisted for the first 
time in San Francisco. From this time forward, the city may 
be said to have been under American rule. During this month 
a company of Mormons from New York, with Samuel Brannan 
as leader, arrived and camped at the base of the sand-hills. 
Had it not been that dissensions and quarrels sprung up among 
them and caused their disbandment, it is highly probable that 
San Francisco, and not Salt Lake, would have been the seat of 
the earthly kingdom of these saints. 


In January, 1847, the American inhabitants numbered about 
three hundred, and the city boasted of a weekly newspaper," 
the California Star, published by Mr. Brannan. The overland 
immigration had marked out a trail during this year, and the 


influx that followed gradually swelled the population of the 
little town until, in March of the succeeding year, it numbered 
over eight hundred. Everything now bade fair for the young 
metropolis. The older towns in the State acknowledged the 
superior locality of San Francisco. A hum of business was 
abroad in its streets. Steamers were panting on the Bay. 

It had been whispered during the spring that rich gold dig- 
gings had been discovered in the up-country. Every day the 
rumors gained credence. Small parties packed up, and went 
on prospecting tours. By June, the truth of the rumor was 
known. Carpenters dropped their hammers. Blacksmiths 
closed their shops. Storekeepers left their counters; teachers, 
their schools; preachers, their pulpits; printers, their type- 
cases; and editors, their sanctums. Everybody was feverish 
with anxiety to be off; and suddenly, "as if by a plague, the 
town was depopulated." Scarce an able-bodied man was to be 
seen upon the streets. 

However, many soon became disgusted with the rough life 
in the mining camp, and returned to the city. Others who had 
gone to try their fortunes were successful and came back laden 
with the precious metal. In due time the news was abroad in 
the Eastern States, and then it was that the great rush to the 
California gold field was inaugurated. San Francisco was the 
port of destination to those who made the journey by water, 
and many who came overland, after a brief sojourn in the 
mines, naturally drifted to the city. The inhabitants numbered 
two thousand in the first of the year 1849. Money was plenty 
— not coin, but gold dust, nuggets and ingots. Enormous 
prices were paid for labor of all kinds. Crime was rampant. 
In the summer of '49 the organization of desperadoes, known 
as the "Hounds," i:)er2Detrated their outrages. Gambling was 
in high repute. Yet the city progressed with giant strides. 
By the end of the year there Avere twenty thousand inhabitants. 
Six hundred and ninety-seven vessels had arrived in seven and a 
half months. Board was five dollars a day. A small room with 
a single bed rented for one hundred and fifty dollars a month. 
Wood cost forty dollars per cord, and flour and pork forty to 
sixty dollars per barrel. Commercially the port of San Fran- 
cisco was up to the standard of Philadelphia. Such was the 
condition of affairs in San Francisco, when, on May 1, 1850, 
the first Legislature voted it a city charter. 


Previous to this date the city government had been adminis- 
tei'ed under an Alcalde. Under the new charter, this office was 
transferred to the Mayoralty. Colonel J. W. Geary holding the 
office of Alcalde when the Americanized charter was created, 
succeeded to the office of Mayor. So great a flood of popula- 
tion coming in so suddenly, was more than the meagre hos- 
pitality afforded at that time could accommodate; it was a 
city of tents. There was much discomfort had on account of 
the excess of rain during the winter. The streets were unim- 
jDroved, and to those who were thus poorly domiciled it Avas a ^ 
gloomy outlook. Omnibuses that were too heavy for the con- 
dition of the streets, were used as restaurants; old ships were 
beached and converted into "first-class" boarding-houses. 
When the rainy season had passed, those who contemplated 
remaining in the city set to work constructing better dwelling- 
places. Houses were merely thrown together. Large build- 
ings were run uj) like a mushroom's growth. Constructed as 
they were out of redwood, with paper ceilings and cloth parti- 
tions, they were but kindling to the fire-fiend, should he start 
on a tour of devastation. On May 4, 1850, a fire broke out 
that consumed three million dollars ' worth of property. On 
the 14th of June following, another fire destroyed four millions 
worth, and in September a half million dollars' worth of prop- 
erty was lost in a conflagration. 

During the half decade from 1850 to 1855, the city enjoj-ed 
unparalleled prosperity; there was thrift on every hand. The 
Bay in those days was a busy scene, and commerce reaped a 
splendid harvest. Everything for consumption was imjDorted, 
while the exports were a few hides and millions of gold. In 
1852 the vessels arriving at this port averaged seven a day. 
Numerous wharves were run far out into deep water, costing 
millions of dollars for their building. Steamers were plowing 
through the bay, and up the rivers. Everything was alive 
with business, and money was suj)erabundant. 

Yet there were many trials undergone, and many obstacles 
had to be met by the inhabitants. Desperadoes and villains of 
all classes flocked to the city from all parts of the world. Crime 
was open-faced. The courts were inactive and lynch law oft- 
times prevailed. Vigilance Committees were often formed, 
and would for a time take the punishment of criminals in 
their hands. Disastrous fires were of frequent occurrence. 



In the common rule of nature, after a protracted calm there 
is usually a storm; so, often is it the experience in the lives of 
men, that, after a season of prosperity, follows a period of 
adversity. San Francisco, by reason of her exceeding pros- 
perity, could not claim exemption from calamities. A financial 
breaker rolled over her that wrecked some of her most sea- 
worthy craft. Page, Bacon & Co., bankers; Adams & Co., 
Dr. Wright's Savings Bank, and James King of "William, 
were prominent among those who succumbed to the jiressure. 
Following this, came a sort of social anarchy. Society was 
sore diseased. Villainy wielded the balance of power, and 
honesty was at a discount. " The law's delay, the insolence of 
office," became the chafing cause of much discomfort. Honest 
voters on election day felt that it was but ill-spent time to 
cast a vote. Ballot-box stuffing, not vox populi, placed men 
in office. In short, the town was ruled by gamblers, rowdies 
and State-prison convicts. "Sydney ducks" were cackling 
in the pond. 

At this juncture, James King of "William took the edito- 
rial chair, and began the publication of the Evening Bulletin. 
Notwithstanding he was a tyro in the profession, his power 
was felt among the evildoers. He applied the lash withoiit 
respect to rank or wealth. Dealing with facts alone, he feared 
no libel suits. He unveiled crime wherever it existed. "When 
it was supposed that Cora, the murderer of Marshal Richard- 
son, was loosely held by the sheriff, he came out in the boldest 
terms. Said he: "If Mr. Sheriff Scannell does not remove 
Billy Mulligan from his present post as keeper of the County 
Jail, and Mulligan lets Cora escape, hang Billy Mulligan; and 
if necessary to get rid of the sheriff, hang him — hang the 
sheriff 1" An attack of similar tone upon one Casey — a mem- 
ber of the Board of Supervisors — led to the attempted assas- 
sination of Mr. King, on the 14th day of May, 1856. Casey 
was an ex-convict of Sing Sing Prison, and in the editorial by 
Mr. King this fact was set forth. Casey revenged himself by 
shooting Mr. King down in the street a few hours after the 
article was published. The sympathy of the best citizens was 
with the wounded man. Fearing an attack on the jail Avhere 
Casey was confined, the military were ordered out. The en- 


raged citizens gathered about the prison. Excitement ran 
high. Mayor Yan Ness attempted to address them from the 
front of the jail. He advised them to disperse, and let the 
law take its course; but the lion was roused. Cries came up 
from the restless multitude, "Where is the law?" "There is 
too much law and too little justice in California." "Down 
with such justice!" At a late hour of the night the crowd 


But this temporary lull was only a time of quiet preparation 
for a general uprising of the outraged subjects of a law whose 
letter was good, but the administration of which was in the 
hands of men for whose punishment the law was made. The 
Vigilance Committee that had been organized as early as 1851, 
met and effected a reorganization. Within thirty hours after 
King was shot, more than two thousand names were enrolled 
on their books. Hundreds stood without the doors of the 
Committee's rooms, anxiously awaiting their turn to subscribe 
to a pledge, the principles of which, if carried out, would purge 
the city of the ballot-box stuffers, jury packers, swindlers, 
thieves and villains generally. The meetings were held with 
closed doors. This secrecy terrified the guilty, and many fled 
the city. Others attempted to enroll themselves among the 
number, but there was an "all-seeing eje" peering from the 
heading of the official paper, that signified that whether within 
the ranks of the organization or without, eveiy one was sub- 
ject to its penetrating gaze. This freed the ranks of all hypo- 

The leading papers, although conservative in tone, with one 
exception, were considered favorable to the organization. The 
clergy withheld condemnation. One minister said in his pulpit: 
"A people can be justified in recalling delegated power and 
resuming its exercise in trying emergencies." Bulletins were 
posted in prominent places detailing King's condition. He 
still lingered, though it was evident his wound would prove 
fatal. The streets were thronged with armed men. With 
quiet tread they marched to the jail where Casey was con- 
fined. When a brass cannon had been mounted in range 
of the jail door, they demanded that he and Cora be deliv- 
ered to their custody. With little delay the demand Avas 


.acceded to. The trembling- prisoners were conveyed in irons 
to the headquarters of the "Vigilantes."' The following day, 
abovit noontime, James King of William breathed his last. 
The bells of the town tolled forth the melancholy tidings. 
Montgomery street, and in fact the whole city, soon wore the 
sable badge of mourning. Business of all kinds was susi^end- 
ed. Crape trimmings were drajDcd uj)on many of the resi- 
dences, and streamed from the door-knobs of the business 
houses. A paralyzing gloom for a time reigned sujDreme. One 
of the best citizens had gone to his death by the hand of an 
assassin. San Francisco was a plague-stricken city. No epi- 
demic disease was raging; no famine was tormenting the in- 
habitants; but there was an even more dreaded calamity afflict- 
ing them — crime in its most dangerous form held the mastery. 
The streets in all directions were darkened with men hurriedly 
pressing on to the headquarters of the "Vigilantes." It was 
the prevailing opinion that the criminals confined there would 
be speedily executed after the death of Mr. King. But this 
was erroneous. Casey was having his trial. There was not 
to be any punishment administered to the innocent; and if lie 
was found guiltless, he should go free. 

On the succeeding day, a vast concourse of people slowly 
wended their way to Lone Mountain, where they deposited in 
its last resting-place the body of the mourned dead. But pre- 
vious to this, Casey's trial had been concluded, and a sentence 
of murder entered against him. 

"While the greater part of the populace were witnessing the 
last sad rites at the grave of their dead friend, quiet prepara- 
tions were going on at the committee-rooms for the enacting- 
of a scene that would strike terror to the heart of every crim- 
inal. A scaffold had been shot oiit from the second-story win- 
dow of the committee-rooms; Casey and Cora were jilaced 
upon it, and the same bells that tolled the funeral march, 
sounded the dirge of these doomed criminals. Ere the fleetest 
of foot had returned from the grave, the bodies of Casey and 
Cora were dangling from the cornice. 

The Vigilance Committee had begun their purging- task in 
earnest. They soon had arrested several of the most notorious 
villains, and, when a fortnight had passed, the city presented 
a more peaceful aspect. The coroner's work had been much 
reduced. The newspapers were minus the regular bloody rec- 


ortl. No more was it considered of great risk to walk abroad 
at night time, and security was felt by all law-abiding citizens. 
But the vicious and criminal classes, if any remained, were 
restless with anxiety; what had been their place of refuge was 
now the most dangerous ground for them to tread. 

There were some among the inhabitants who at this stage 
of its existence deemed it proper that the Committee should 
disband. Tavo of the daily papers came out in opposition to 
longer vigilance nile; one prominent clergy-man strenuously 
oj)posed them. The politicians undertook to make capital out 
of its existence, and a strong faction urged that it disband. 
Meetings were appointed of anti-vigilante character, but the 
sympathy of the masses was yet with the Committee. 

On the third of June, 1856, Governor Johnson issued a proc- 
lamation declaring San Francisco in a state of insurrection. 
"William T. Sherman was commissioned major-general, and in 
his proclamation the Governor commanded all volunteer com- 
panies, and all persons subject to military duty, to rejDort at 
once to him, and remain in readiness for further orders. The 
Vigilance Committee was commanded to disband. 

This, perhaps, was the plain duty of the Governor, but the 
good results following the reign of the Committee made the 
existence of that organization the desire of the masses. A few 
men enrolled themselves, but the proclamation was by no 
means received favorably. Seeing that there would probably 
be some attempt made by the Governor and his adherents 
to force it to disband, the Committee opened its books for 
new enlistments, fortified its headquarters, and made general 
preparations for defense. In this dilemma the Governor ap- 
plied to the President at Washington for advice and aid. 
The President declined to interfere. Some misunderstanding 
ha^dng obtained between Major Sherman and the Governor, 
the former tendered his resignation. This was accepted, and 
Mr. Volney E. Howard was aj^pointed as his successor. A 
shipment of arms and ammunition, in charge of Reuben 
Maloney, to Major Howard, had been made from Sacramento 
by the Governor, and the Vigilance Committee, learning of 
this, sent out a squad of men, who boarded the vessel and 
transferred to the Committee's arsenal all the ammunition 
and arms. Another schooner was making a landing about 
this time,haAingon board, as was supposed, a cargo of biicks. 


The Vigilants looked upon this craft with suspicious eyes, and, 
after going on board and turning up a few layers of bricks, 
discovered twelve cases of rifles and six of ammunition. This 
was another installment from the Governor to Major Howard. 
These also soon found storage in the Committee's arsenal. 
This was on June 20, 1856. 

On the day following, a meeting of the Committee was held, 
at which it desired Mr. Maloney to be present, to explain the 
circumstances connected with the shipment of arms that he 
had charge of. Mr. A. Hopkins, of the Vigilance police, was 
detailed to go and bring him. He, with two assistants, pro- 
ceeded to the office of Dr. H. P. Ashe, United States Naval 
Agent, where they found Maloney in company mth Dr. Ashe 
and Associate Justice David S. Terry, of the Supreme Court. 
These two gentlemen informed Hopkins that no arrest could 
be made in their presence. Hopkins, therefore, returned to 
the Committee's rooms for reinforcements. 

During his absence, Terry and Ashe armed themselves and 
descended to the street with Maloney, whom they designed to 
escort to the armory on Dupont Street and place him in 
charge of the "Law and Order" troops. Hopkins's party, 
however, soon overtook them. As they drew near to each 
other, Terry and Ashe handled their arms in so threatening a 
manner as to cause Hopkins to suppose that resistance would 
be made. Hopkins sprang upon Terry, while another officer 
seized Ashe. The latter surrendered at once, but Terry strug- 
gled desperately to free himself, and, before the struggle was 
ended, Hopkins received a severe cut in the neck from a knife 
in the hands of Terry. During the excitement that this con- 
flict naturally occasioned, the three escaped. The great bell 
over the rooms of the Vigilant Committee sounded a call to 
arms. Men of all trades and professions quit their respective 
offices or workshops, and, in an hour's time, the streets were 
filled with an excited multitude rushing with great speed to 
the Committee's rooms. Vigilants had soon surrounded the 
Dupont Street armory. The soldiery that occupied this, see- 
ing "'that resistance would be useless, sued for peace. The 
conditions of the treaty were brief and to the point. The 
Vigilants demanded the persons of Judge Terry and Eeuben 
Maloney. These gentlemen were bi'ought out, and then the 
whole armory, with its quota of muskets was given, over to the- 


besiegers. In hot liaste they marched through the city to 
every armoiy or jiLice Avhere the ' ' Law and Order' ' forces 
were stationed, and by night the Vigilantes were masters of 
the city. Not a shot had been fired. 

The prison cells at the Committee's rooms were filled with 
men who had been cai:)tured at the "Law and Order" armo- 
ries. Hopkins, the ofiicer wounded by Judge Terry, was in a 
critical condition, and Terry was languishing in his cell, jier- 
haps secretly hoj^ing that the gash he had inflicted would soon 
heal, for upon the recovery of his victim depended his escape 
from the gallows. "With the Vigilants, rank and position had 
no influence. Terry, however, had many friends who inter- 
ested themselves in his behalf. In Texas, his former home, 
the Legislature submitted a memorial to Congress, praying 
the Federal Government to interfere in his behalf. It was 
hotly debated and referred to the Judiciary Committee, but 
was never reported ujDon. "When Hoj^kins had recovered, and 
after a protracted trial, in Avhich over one hundred and fifty 
witnesses had been examined, Judge Terry was liberated, 
having occupied his cell as prisoner for almost seven weeks. 
He was advised by the Committee to resign his judgeship. 

The 12th of August, 185G, found the cells of the Vigilance 
Committee empty. The cit}^ enjoyed unusual immunity from 
crime and disorder. The members of the Committee felt there 
was no further work, for the present, required of them; therefore 
they joublicly signified their intention of immediately disband- 
ing. Six days later — Monday, August 18 — business in the city 
was generally suspended, and the streets were thronged with 
the inhabitants who had gathered to witness the grand final 
parade of the " San Francisco Committee of Vigilance." There 
was a flag presentation; speeches were made; and the Execu- 
tive Committee published an address to the General Commit- 
tee, setting forth the motives of organization, reciting that the 
purposes of the Committee had been accomplished, and recom- 
mending its members to retiu'n to their respective avocations, 
and let the civil authorities resume control of the city. 

They, however, reserved the discretion of reassembling 
should emergencies arise Avhen they felt the safety of life and 
society demanded such action. They kept their guards on 
du.ty until about the first of September, when the flag over 
the rooms was lowered , and thus ended the unwholesome con- 


ilict. The work they had performed sjooke for itself. Four 
criminals had been executed; about twenty-five had been ban- 
ished; and those whom fright drove from the city was variously 
estimated at from five to eight hundred. Ou the 3d of No- 
vember the Committee surrendered the State arms that it 
had captured, to the Governor; the proclamation of insurrec- 
tion was withdrawn, and things resumed their regular routine. 
The example set by the metropolis, of the citizens thus 
taking the administration of the laws into their own hands, 
when the outlaws and vagabonds became too overbearing, has 
since been followed many times in almost all the prominent 
mining towns of the coast. These mining camps, in their 
prosperous days, become the "hunting-ground" of thieves, 
gamblers, murderers, and adventurers of all kinds, who some- 
times commit such high-handed outrages that the law-abiding 
citizens are fain to rise in their wrath, and smite them hij) and 
thigh. This sudden vengeance usually takes the form of 
"Lynch law," and the morals of the community are jDurged 
and cleansed by the expulsion or hanging of the leaders of the 
outlaws. Of late days, these Committees style themselves 
"601," and written "notices to quit," signed with this mystic 
number, generally ofi'er sufiicient inducement for suspected 
characters to change their places of abode, without further 
action being necessary. No mining camp of any notoriety 
has escaped tCe infliction of the "roughs;" but when the 
Committee of "601" is organized, and its official announce- 
ments are made, the towns are soon cleared of objectionable 
characters, who know the result of non-compliance with the 
order too well to brave it. 


The most exciting epoch in the history of San Francisco is 
now past. Since the disbandment of the Vigilance Committee 
in 1856, there has been a comparative exemption from riotous 
gatherings on her streets. Yet, almost every page of her his- 
tory is crimsoned with blood, and crime and vice have always 
been more open than in many other cities of equal importance. 
This, however, can be accounted for by the rapid growth the 
city has made. 

San Francisco is most decidedly cosmopolitan in its character. 
Through its broad gateway to the sea, and over its continental 


liigliway, have throng-ed people of all nations, all creeds, and 
all characters, having' but one idea in common — the thirst for 
gold. Arriving here with exaggerated opinions of the fortunes 
to be made, they find that in California, as elsewhere, it takes 
work to make money. Many who are disappointed in their 
hopes of accumulating a fortune in a year's time, fall back on 
the metropolis of the coast as the best jilace to make a living 
Avithout work. As this class increased, crime increased. Thieves 
and vagabonds of all kinds flock to ' ' the city " to ply their 
nefarious vocations; and the records of oui' criminal coui'ts 
show with what energy these outcasts carry out their plans. 
Notwithstanding the presence of so many of such classes, in 
l^roportion to the population, the advance of the city has been 

In population, in commerce, in the arts and sciences, in 
short, in everything that tends to transform a town into a 
great metropolis, San Francisco has no peer. Nature has done 
much for her. Located as she is, on the magnificent Bay of 
San Francisco, whose waters can easily float the fleets of the 
world, and the position she occupies as to the Orient, has 
naturally brought through her gates the greater part of the 
traffic between the United States and that country. The 
agricultural and mineral resources of the State that have been 
developed in the last twenty years, have also done much 
toward the progress of the city. 

The completion of the Central Pacific Eailroad in 18G9, 
opening up convenient and quick communication with the 
Eastern States and the interior, was the grand triumph for the 
city and State. From the time the first train came thunder- 
ing down the Sacramento Valley with its freight of Eastern 
passengers, there has been an almost unceasing stream of 
travel pouring into the city. Long lines of freight cars have 
daily come and gone laden with the varied freights that the 
disturbed equilibrium of demand and supply keep in transit. 
It is no doubt true, however, that for a time after the comple- 
tion of the railroad, the city of San Francisco itself felt its 
business in a measure depressed. The merchants of the city, 
accustomed before to receive all the orders for goods from the 
interior of California and Nevada, found that the interior mer- 
chants could make good bargains for themselves in the East, 
and that in this way much of the business of San Francisco 


was lost. A whole horde of " runners " from Eastern cities 
Infested the coast, and to a great extent changed the channels 
of trade. The interior towns became more independent of the 
metropolis in the matter of sui^plies, and manj' of the country 
merchants began to import their own goods. However, as 
San Francisco commands so much capital, and all the large 
importers and wholesale dealers are here, these difficulties 
have adjusted themselves, and she still remains "queen of the 
Pacific." Her merchants are even more prosperous than of 
yore, as increase of population has brought with it increase of 

There have been some financial panics and disastrous fires 
that would for a time paralyze business and temporarily check 
the progress of the city; but San Franciscans seem to possess 
wonderful rectiperative powers, and what would depress busi- 
ness in many cities for a twelvemonth, is but a "ten days' 
wonder" here. The most sudden and surprising crisis that 
has ever come upon the city, was the suspension of the Bank 
of California, in August, 1875. This calamity- seemed to 
strike alarm to eyerj heart. A real panic impended. The 
excitement it occasioned, together with the tragic events at- 
tending it, was for a few days the most intense. AVhen, how- 
ever, an official examination into the affairs of the bank was 
had, and an authoritative announcement had been made, that 
resumption would speedily ensue, the faith in the vitality of 
Califoi;nian institutions grew strong, and the public mind was 
again at ease. 


San Francisco has been denominated the Paris of America. 
This certainly should not be looked upon by her citizens as a 
disparagement. It is true that there are many manners and 
customs obtaining in Paris that are to be condemned; but 
what city can be named that surpasses her in the attainments 
that are the boast of modern civilization ? If it be the good 
qualities of the French capital that San Francisco emulates 
so as to be yclept " Our Paris," then ma}^ she well be proud 
of the christening. 

But we fear that the "fastness" of her inhabitants, their 
ap23arent disregard of the Sabbath, together with other naughty 
Parisian ways, is the cause of her having received that ap- 


San Francisco, as a place of residence, is preferable to most 
cities. The climate is pleasant at all seasons of tlie year. 
There is a bracing atmosjDhere that is wonderfully invigorating. 
The windy and foggy weather that prevails at certain seasons. 
for a few weeks, is the most gloomy side of San Francisco cli- 
mate. During the rainj' season, or winter, the climate is de- 
lightful. The rainfall often occurs during the night, after 
which not uufrequently follows a bright sunny day. This 
brings light hearts and buoyant spirits, and the smile of 
Nature is reciprocated b}- the people. The bracing air tinges 
the cheek of the inhabitant with a ruddy glow. "Every one 
looks healthy in San Francisco," is a common expression of 
Eastern visitors. Epidemic diseases seldoin prevail, but those 
afflicted with lung diseases or rheumatism should not tariy 
long in the city. There is too much moisture in the air for 
them, and the summer winds are too raw. 

As with many other things, the climate works by the " rule 
of contrary." In the summer the people in the country come 
to the city to get cool, and the city people go to the country 
to get Avarm. In the " dry season" the interior of the State 
is hot and parched, while, at that time, the trade winds have 
begun to blow on the coast and San Francisco is seen at it& 
dirtiest and worst. The countrj^ people, however, come to 
San Francisco to cool off and breathe long draughts of iodine- 
bearing sea air, wrapped in their overcoats the Avhile, and the 
denizens of the metropolis hie themselves to the country to 
bask in the sunshine and loll about in their shirt-sleeves at 
their leisure. San Francisco itself is the windiest place on the 
coast, but when you get twenty miles away in either direction, 
north or south, you get out of the winds again and into a 
milder climate. The high winds, though disagreeable to some^ 
are laden with health for the city. Those who cannot endure 
them must go south to the balmy atmosphere of Santa Barbara 
or San Diego, where they will find a climate to suit them and 
their complaint. 

Kearny and Montgomery Streets are the fashionable thor- 
oughfares of the city. On a pleasant Saturday evening it is 
bewildering to walk along Kearny Street — now the Broadway 
of San Francisco. It seems as if half the population were 
out for a promenade. Market Street also, on such occasions, 
is alive with walking humanity. Some of the shop windows 


ou Kearny and Montgomery Streets are resplendent with gaudy 

Everything that the heart could wish can be had in San 
Francisco. The costliest toilettes, the richest jewels, every 
luxury for the table, can be purchased in abundance. 

The hilly parts of the city are considered the most desirable 
for residence. The fog is not so dense there, and the drainage 
is better. On Post, Sutter, Bush, Pine and California Streets 
are to be seen many elegant dwellings. Those of some of the 
wealthy citizens are truly palatial. 

Dwelling-house architecture in San Francisco differs much 
from that followed in Eastern cities. There seems to be a 
passion for bay windows — "they are all the rage." The 
smallest cottage and the grandest mansion have their bay or 
oriel windows ; besides this, the architecture is more orna- 
mental. There is a picturesqueness about it that is jDleasing, 
but there is also, unfortunately, a great deal of sameness, as if 
everything was done by mill-work and by the same pattern. 
Very little architectural display is made on the dwelling-houses, 
if we except those of late date erected by stock millionaires. 
All the embellishment is put upon the business houses on 
California, Market, Montgomery and Kearny Streets, but even 
that is of a sameness. The houses are built lower than is 
usual in cities, and there are few of the immense seven-story 
buildings of Eastern towns. Occasional earthquakes, probably, 
remind the architects not to build too high and to keep their 
sky parlors pretty near the ground. 

There are churches of every denomination in San Francisco. 
The clergy are able and sincere; the communicants are nume- 
rous and devoted. The public schools are excellent. The 
grades are well defined and the teachers must be competent 
educators. The attendance is very large. 

The records of casualties, street fights, and runaway teams, 
rogues' dens, etc., that occupy prominent places in some of 
the daily papers, are enough to deter timid persons from visit- 
ing the city. "We can assure these, however, that a watchful 
police at all times keep close vigil of the doings of men. The 
ordinary citizen does not see a street fight once a year. The 
inventive genius of the reporters who must furnish so much 
thrilling copy, it must be remembered, has something to do 
with these blood-curdling scenes, and the Barbary Coast must 
have its excitement. 


There are many rich men in San Francisco, and few ex- 
tremely poor. There are many good citizens, and morahty 
has not lost its significance. There are also many vile and 
criminal creatures. San Francisco is a problem— it has its 
lights and shades. 











CALIFOKNIA STEEET, until recently, has been the seat 
of all stock speculations. Between Sansome and Mont- 
gomery streets this business centres. The San Francisco Stock 
and Exchange Board meets there. This, among operators, is 
familiarly called the "Big" Board. The "Little" Board, or 
California Stock Exchange, has rooms at the terminus of 
Leidesdorfi street, off California. The "New" Board, re- 
cently organized under the title of the Pacific Stock Exchange 
Board, occupies rooms at number 318 Montgomery street, near 
California. The greater bulk of the stock business, however, 
is transacted on California street. The great moneyed insti- 
tutions of San Francisco are located there. 

From Battery to Kearny street is the centre of the heaviest 
financial transactions. The Bank of California; the London 
and San Francisco Bank; the Merchants' Exchange Bank; the 
Anglo-Californian Bank; "Wells, Fargo & Co.'s Exj)ress Office 
and Banking Department; the Merchants' Exchange building; 
the Safe Deposit Co.'s building and vaults, together with many 
other important institutions, the conducting of which requires 
immense capital, are inside these limits. The buildings occu- 
jned by these various institutions are generally constructed of 
very substantial materials, the architecture being varied and 
unique. Three stories and a basement is the usual height. 


The Safe Deposit Co.'s builJiug is a beautiful structure, and 
that occupied by the London and San l''rancisco Bank is 
imposing and elegant. 

The basements are mostly occupied by stock and money 
brokers, and the second and third stories by mining secreta- 
ries and capitalists. The brokers who are members of the dif- 
ferent stock boards are mostly to be found in the best o£Sces 
on California street, keeping the uninitiated and small brokers, 
as it were, on the suburbs of the business centre. Yet some 
of the most wealthy and influential oj^erators are to be found 
in dingy offices on unimportant alley-ways or streets. It is 
jDOSsible that they retreat thither to enjoy solitude; but how- 
ever this may be, there is always about them a band of hangers- 
on, who, Avhen opi^ortunit}^ offers, obtrude themselves into 
their presence. 

The San Francisco Stock and Exchange Board, by reason of 
age and prestige, enjoys the reputation of being the most aris- 
tocratic. Many of the millionaires have seats in this Board. 
Enrolled among its members may be seen the names of H. 
Schmieden, Hon. J. P. Jones, J. H. Latham, the McDonalds, 
Hon. Wm. Sharon, and J. C. Flood and W. S. O'Brien of the 
Nevada Bank. This Board has now in process of construction 
a massive building which, when complete, will be occupied by 
it for the daily stock transactions. This building is on the 
south side of Pine street, between Montgomery and Sansome. 
On April 27, 1876, the ceremony of laying the corner-stone 
was performed. A vast number of curious people assembled 
to witness the baptismal rites as performed by the worshipi^ers 
of Mammon. Col. W. H. L. Barnes delivered a brief but 
appropriate address, after which the metallic case containing 
numerous memorials was let down into its sarcophagus, and 
the finely wrought granite block was cemented upon it, to re- 
main perhaps so long as time endures. A banquet and toasts 
followed in the evening at the Board Room, and there was 
much good cheer among the " Bulls" and " Bears " of Cali- 
fornia street, and their invited guests. 

The building when complete will be an elegant and substan- 
tial monument to the real worth of the mineral de^DOsits that 
those who erect it have aided so materially in developing. 
California street will have then lost its greatest attraction, and 
the quiet of the less exciting pursuits will reign where so long 


Las echoed the cries of those who would woo the fickle god- 
dess by dealing in stocks. 

It is exceedingly difficult to obtain a seat in the San Francisco 
Stock Board. Besides having to submit to the scrutinizing search 
of the committee that is deputized to examine into his character, 
the applicant for membership must have a bank account of no 
mean proportions upon which he can draw should the ballot be 
in his favor. It is not unusual for j)ersons to pay $30,000 for 
a seat in this body. The standard by which the applicant is 
judged is, however, not too high. Ostensibly he must possess 
honesty and integrity. There must be no stain upon his busi- 
ness character. But really if he be shrewd enough to keep the 
general public in ignorance of any sharp practices that he may 
have engaged in, this faculty will weigh well against any little 
" shortcomings." As a rule none but those possessing business 
integrity are admitted. 

The California Stock Exchange is quite an old organization, 
and although it is called the "Little" Board there is neverthe- 
less much business transacted in its rooms. The rules gov- 
erning the admission of members are not so strictly enforced 
as in the other Board, and as a consequence unprincipled men 
are enrolled as members. But because some tares are mixed 
in with the wheat, we should not condemn the whole measure. 
There are men, members of this Board, whose characters are 
above rejjroach. The names of some of the wealthiest citizens, 
also, appear on its roll. The expense of a seat in this Board 
varies from $800 to $1000. 

The Pacific Stock Exchange, although having been organ- 
ized but a little more than a year, has stepped up nearly to 
the rank of the "Big" Board. The price of membership ranged 
high from the first. It would require now $10,000 to secure a 
seat in this body. The business done by this Board comj^ares 
favorably with that transacted in the older and more aristo- 
cratic. E. J. Baldwin, John F. Boyd, A. J. Moulder, Wm. 
M. Lent, James M. McDonald, Geo. S. Dodge and Jules P. 
Cavallier are among the familiar names that occur on its list 
of members. Du.ring the first thirteen months of its existence 
the Pacific Stock Exchange Board occupied rooms at the cor- 
ner of Halleck and Sansome streets. Recently, however, it 
has remodeled the building at No. 318 Montgomery street, 
into a spacious and well-arranged Board-room. The Board 


occupied it for the first time ou May 15, 187G. This is the 
finest room of its character in the city. Its finish iu every 
respect is superb. The walls are frescoed iu rich tints, costly 
chandeliers depend from the ceilings, and the designs upon 
the glass doors, skylights and walls are appropriate and artis- 
tic. Paying visitors only are admitted to the main floor where 
the business is transacted; but no price is charged for attend- 
ing in the galleries. A ladies' gallery, supplied with comfort- 
able seats, richly uj^holstered, occupies the more secluded por- 
tion of the room. 

The day of the opening of the Board Eoom was the occasion 
of a grand celebration by the members of the Board and their 
friends. The usual inaugural and dedicatorial ceremonies were 
performed " with appropriate solemnity," and the good feel- 
ing that exists among the members Avas exj^ressed by a lavish 
liberality of good words as well as some handsome and very 
costly presents. At these exercises there were present in large 
numbers the elite of the city; and the magnificence of the 
room, together with the elegance of the toilets, made the scene 
one of almost dazzling brilliancy. The inaugural ceremonies 
were followed by a grand supper at the Palace Hotel, whither 
were invited the more favored of the audience. 

Some unfriendly feelings have obtained between this and the 
San Francisco Board since its organization. Kegulations re- 
stricting, and in some instances forbidding, intercourse be- 
tween the two, have been enacted. The real cause of this ani- 
mosity is perhaps due to jealousy, but time, no doubt, will 
restore friendly relations. 

These Boards meet at 11 a.m., and continue in session 
until 12 o'clock. The afternoon meeting convenes at 3 and 
closes at 4 o'clock. Those having seats in either of the 
Boards are denominated "insiders;" and operators who do 
not enjoy this distinction, are known as " outsiders." 


Early in the day can be seen groujDS and knots of "out- 
siders " assembled on the street in front of, and in the door- 
way leading to, the chamber of the Board of Brokers. They 
are a promiscuovis assemblage. The jobbing broker is among 
them. He is a wiry little individual, uses very emphatic lan- 
guage, is apparently well j^osted on all stock topics, confides 


some important information to one, quietly takes anotlaer by 
the sleeve, and stepping aside, tells him (always otit of friendly 
considerations) what to invest in to-da}^; and, in short, is the 
oracle of small speculators, who gather about him eager to 
catch " a point" from his wise remarks. 

That man who is listening so attentively to the words of the 
portly gentleman with a silk hat and gold-headed cane, is a 
Front street commission merchant, who, during the excite- 
ment of the day before, bought Ophir. He was on his way 
to his business, when he heard some one remark that stocks 
were " ofi'," and that is why he looks so anxious. The speaker 
is a well-kept gentleman of leisure who "doesn't dabble in 
stocks himself, but merely occupies the position of looker-on." 
" It's a pleasant pastime," he saj's, "to quietly watch the ex- 
cited throng. One can gain a better knowledge of how the 
market will be in the future by standing aloof and keeping 
cool. It is my opinion," he continues, as the number of list- 
eners increase, "that there is not money enough afloat to keep 
up the iDresent prices. An influential and wealthy friend of 
mine — a broker, by the way — told me, only yesterday, that his 
banker could not further accommodate him; that really the 
present outlook foreboded a great stringency in finances, and 
he added confidentially that unless there was relief obtained 
from some unlooked-for source, a panic impended." He con- 
tinues in this strain, and by the time the Boards meet his 
remarks have passed from mouth to mouth, growing in inten- 
sity and becoming more authentic at each repetition. A feel- 
ing of uncertainty comes over the crowd. Timid holders 
grow frightened. Those who have their little all invested, 
scent an immediate decline, and before the calls have regu- 
larly begun in the Board-rooms there is a weakness percepti- 
ble all along the line. This man was endeavoring to "Bear" 
the market. He was a "Bear-capper." In every group on 
the sidewalk could have been found such a personage. The 
work of the ' ' Bulls " and ' ' Bears " is performed on the out- 
side, usually in advance of the morning session of the Board 
and during the noon recess. When the "Bulls" are in the 
ascendancy the argument is directly opposite. "It is really 
wonderful how abundant monej'^ is," will be heard whis^Dered 
around, as though it was a secret that should be kept from the 
masses. ' ' Everything will be booming in a few days. Choi- 


lar this morning can be bouglit for sixty. In a week it will go 
to eighty-five, at least. You can depend on it; I have it from 
the 'inside.'" After this kind of street-talk, there is lively 
business in the Boards. Any amount of small orders will be 
wanted. Five shares of Ophir; ten of Belcher; twenty of 
Union Consolidated. Clerks, bookkeepers, mechanics, printer- 
boys, hotel and restaurant waiters, up-town grocers, and every 
one that can raise from fifty to five hundred dollars ready cash, 
are sending in their orders. 


As the hour approaches for the meeting of the Boards, mem- 
bers of those bodies make their appearance on the streets, and 
quietl}^ pass into the Board-room. Occasionally one of these 
is corralled by the anxious crowd, and he is plied unmercifully 
with questions as to how "she's going to open to-day," etc. 
The crowd now centres about the main entrance, and were it 
not for the legal authority vested in the policeman who has his 
station near by, ingress would be almost impossible. The 
ofiicer, however, succeeds in parting the throng sufficient to 
admit of a man squeezing through. It is a regularly formed 
gauntlet. All that is wanting to make it a blood}' ordeal to 
pass between these human walls, is the tomahawk and war- 
club. The excitement is not lacking. The line extends clear 
out over the sidewalk, and sometimes into the middle of the 

Within the Board-room, for half an hour before the formal 
opening, a scene of confusion is enacted. Bids on favorite 
stocks are made by some, while others are offering their pets. 
These are generally "feelers," thrown out to' ascertain the 
state of feeling that exists among the members. Soon, how- 
ever, they get to business in earnest. Great disorder prevails. 
Each one, in the endeavor to make himself heard, yells at the 
top of his voice. One man hears an offer made that he would 
accept if he could onl}' find the bidder. He rushes pell-mell 
through the excited crowd hunting his man. They clamber 
over chairs, perch upon the table, elbow each other about, and 
gesticulate like madmen. Amid this din of voices, the presid- 
ing officer enters, and aj)proaching his stand, raps loudlj' on 
the sound-board with his mallet, and calls out in a stern, 
commanding voice, "Order! Order!" Suddenly all is quiet. 


Tliose who but a moment before were the noisiest in the room, 
move quietly to their seats. Some hesitate as if dissatisfied 
or loth to quit the floor, then go scowling to their desks. The 
roll is called. If there be no miscellaneous business before 
the meeting-, the chairman proceeds to call off the regular list 
of stocks that are daily sold in the Boards. Some of least 
importance usually come first. A reasonable time is allowed, 
when, if there be no response, the caller announces the next. 
In this manner he proceeds iindisturbed until some exciting 
stock is called, when the whole chamber is aroused. They 
spring from their chairs and rush furiously into the " cocki^it" 
or open space in front of the caller's stand. There is no order. 
All cry out at once. They shout their offers to buy or sell. 
They jostle and push each other about like frightened animals 
before a stampede. They rush from one place to another, 
wildly gesticulating, stamping and chafing as if infuiiate. 
They froth at the mouth from excessive screaming. They yell 
and scream until their voices grow liusky. A midnight sere- 
nade from the howling coyote is not more confusing. Bedlam 
let loose would scarce rival 'the scene . Yet, amid this Babel 
of voices, the quick ear of the secretary seldom fails to catch 
the sales that are made. "Order! order, gentlemen!" the 
caller again cries, " we'll hear the secretary." The secretary 
reads the record of sales, and if any disputes arise, the caller 
names the seller and buyer. Should this be unsatisfactory, a 
vote of the Board gives the final decision. While the excite- 
ment prevails within the inclosure, in the space without there 
is a surging throng of eager spectators. The excitement per- 
vades the whole audience. Various exclamations arise from 
the crowd. A space in the auditorium is set apart for lady 
visitors, and they too become enthusiastic or despondent as 
their favorites rise or fall. They may have large sums in- 
vested, as many ladies speculate in stocks. 

In the rooms of the " Little" Board and the Pacific Stock 
Exchange, spectators are admitted free, while in the San Fran- 
cisco Stock and Exchange Board a fee of five dollars monthly 
is charged. A ticket of admission is furnished on payment of 
this sum and the holder can go in as a spectator at will. 

"When parties desire a stock " listed" (that is, placed on the 
daily list of the Board) they must furnish conclusive evidence 
that the mine which the stock represents has more than a 


"paper" existence. Yet by sliarp manij)ulation, ■worthless 
stock sometimes gets on the Boards, and enjoys a good run 
"before its real character is discovered. These are termed 
" vvild cat" stocks, and many fortunes have been swamped 
in deals of this kind, 


Notwithstanding- the numerous membershij) of the three 
Boards, there is yet much speculation engaged in on the out- 
side. Small operators who are unable or not willing to pay a 
commission to the "inside" broker, meet in groups on the 
sidewalk in front of the entrance to the Board, and by keep- 
ing runners constantly watching the prices that prevail inside, 
take these for a guide and buy and sell among themselves. 
These are the " Curbstone Brokers," and to a person unac- 
quainted with their habits, their meetings are a curiosity. By 
their noisy demonstrations, they attract a large crowd of idle 
and dissolute men who have a distaste for anything like work, 
but manifest a keen relish for such excitement. Not unfre- 
quently the street is blockaded so that it is difficult for teams 
to pass. Pedestrians will save time and many hard knocks by 
making the circuit of a block so as to avoid elbowing their 
way through this motley throng. All day long their yells and 
screams are heard for half a block away. They jibber and 
cavil and quarrel — now howling like enraged beasts, now giv- 
ing vent to maniacal screams that would almost shock the 
strong nerves of the superintendent of an Insane Asylum. So 
intent are they on their business, that even the noonday sun 
of midsummer or the drenching rain of a winter's day, does 
not drive them from their haunt. Like vultures about a car- 
cass, whether rain or shine, they must eat or they starve. 


If the question were asked, "Who are they that deal in 
stocks ?" it might be answered briefly, men of every avocation. 
During an unusual excitement, almost everybody that hj any 
means can raise money, invests it in stocks. There is no limit 
as to profession or trade; and we might add, as to creed or 
sect. Lawyers, doctors, preachers, bankers, merchants, clerks, 
bookkeepers, mechanics, and in fact persons in every occupa- 
tion are allured into this species of speculation. Women also 


get the mania. By private entrances they visit their brokers 
and give orders to buy or sell. So seductive is the influence 
when the excitement is once upon them, that those of the most, 
fixed resolutions cannot at all times resist a venture. The 
merchant will reduce his capital stock to raise a sum for invest- 
ment. The lawj^er draws on his client's money; the banker 
temporarily appropriates his dejDosits; the bookkeeper tam- 
pers with his employer's cash — all honest in their motives, 
assuring themselves that they can replace the funds thus used 
at short notice, meanwhile they would have turned an " honest 
penny " for their own account. Many have serious cause to 
regret a venture in this direction. One young man — a broker's 
clerk — in a few months' time ased money and securities be- 
longing to his employer, amounting to more than fifty thou- 
sand dollars. For this unwarrantable conduct he now lan- 
guishes in San Quentin. "When he is released his best years 
will have been wasted. A minister had been investing for 
himself and a brother divine, and so long as the profits were 
coming in there was harmony and unity between them. A 
bad investment, however, swamped their mutual capital; this 
created ill feeling; the breach widened until a bitter animosity 
existed between them. A scandal was concocted, or a real one 
developed, by the one who had operated through his brother, 
and before peace was restored the holy cause in which they 
labored was dishonored, their own names and characters de- 
famed, and many innocent persons scandalized. The debris 
of fortunes thus shattered is seen on every hand. Any day 
on California street can be seen the physical wrecks of humans 
who were once men, bvit meeting with reverses in stock specu- 
lations took to the cup and are now debased. The Insane 
Asylum at Stockton has living witnesses to what this wild ex- 
citement leads. These are the mental wrecks — men who have 
gone stock mad. On a quiet morning, when nature was all in 
smiles and the world looked brighter than for manj^ a day be- 
fore, a sharp report was heard in one of our aristocratic man- 
sions. Investigation revealed that the proprietor was a corpse. 
He had sent a leaden messenger of death through his heart. 
Cause? — "Reverses in business," the evening paper sympa- 
thetically expressed it. He had lost in stocks. It was a stock, 
suicide. The bay gives up its dead; and, in the ghast^./ 
bodies that have sometimes washed ashore, the features of sojie 


well-known business man is recognized. The jury finds a ver- 
dict " accidental drowning." Later developments j^rove that 
lie had sought relief from financial ruin by hiding 'neath the 
billows. Stocks ? Yes, it was stocks. 


But a brighter side j)resents itself. Its effect is such as to 
almost atone for the misery that stares boldly out from the 
dark picture. With all the disastrous results attending 
speculations in mining stocks, there are some redeeming 
features. With some men the business is nothing more nor 
less than a lotter}% with ten points against, to one in favor of, 
success. It is gambhng. They are su7~e to lose. If they win, 
it is only by chance. But many have engaged in it with suc- 
cessful results at each venture. They grappled with the i^rob- 
lem of advance and decline, and they solved it. They were 
not allured by the excitement, but calculated well before push- 
ing out from shore. They considered the matter, and gave 
the same studious thought to the subject that any judicious 
person will avail himself of, before purchasing a farm, or buy- 
ing a horse. They counted the cost, and did not go beyond 
their depth. With such men the buying and selling of stocks 
is as legitimate as the banking or mercantile jDursuit. They 
are self-possessed, and at all times keep cool. It is the excite- 
ment attending the business that causes the disastrous results. 
If successful in one deal, some men become reckless or lose 
control of their wits. Those who have heaped up fortunes by 
stock speculations (and in San Francisco they are many), as a 
rule have, for the time, made it their regular business. They 
gave it their entire attention. They comj^rehended as nearly 
as could be, the circumstances or laws governing the fluctua- 
tions of the stock. Ignorant and ill-informed jjersons always 
lose unless by sheer luck. Time, the freaks of the mining 
stock market are frequent and abiaipt. Theory only, can 
account for the sudden changes. There is risk attending every 
investment, but it is thus in any business. The old saying, 
" nothing risked nothing gained," is aj^plicable to every de- 
partment of trade or commerce. 

San Francisco owes her prosperity to the mines of California 
and Nevada. Her rapid growth in a commercial way, is due 
in a great measure, to them. Depopulation would ensue were 


these mineral I'esources removed. Mechanical ingenuity has 
done much to develop them. The powerful rock-drills that 
have but recently been employed, have penetrated the mount- 
ains of granite. The monster engines that propel the hoisting 
machinery, could not be dispensed with. The untiring stroke 
of the pump piston whose power diverts rivers of water from 
their natural course, performs an invaluable work; but the 
prime motor in the whole complication has been the mining 
stock market. 

The beautiful mansions that ornament the residence part of 
the city are the offspring of stock speculations. The stanch 
business blocks that greet the eye at every turn, stand as mon- 
uments to successful ventures in this line. The dense cloud 
that" mantles the manufacturing district of the city would 
drift far out to sea, and in its stead would droop upon the 
foundry walls the gloom of quick decay, were this source of 
speculation cut off. By it capital is attracted. The wealth 
of the old world seeks investment here. Capital has made a 
San Francisco. 


An idea of the magnitude of the stock business is sug- 
gested by the number of men engaged in the brokerage busi- 
ness. More than three hundred such offices exist in San 
Fi'ancisco. All these men live either by the legitimate profits 
of their business or by shaving their credulous customers. 
They all, more or less, engage in the speculation on their own 
account. The small swindling schemes that unprincipled 
brokers engage in are various and perplexing. A person 
deposits the money and instructs the broker to buy him one 
hundred shares of stock, at a limited price, say $50 per share. 
The broker goes out and buys it. During the day, however, 
the stock advances to $55. Seeing his chance, the broker 
turns around and sells it, and when his customer calls for his 
stock, he regrets to inform him that he could not obtain it at 
the limit he had set. The money is returned to the customer, 
who no doubt feels crest-fallen at having fixed the limit so low, 
not entertaining the least suspicion that he has been really 
swindled out of a profit of $5 per share. By this little sharp 
deal, the broker has increased his capital $500, without a dol- 
lar invested. This practice is very common among a certain 


class of brokers, and yet there is no means by which they can 
be detected. With fluctuating stocks this opportunity is 
often afforded. 

Another instance of depravity among- this class, is, "put- 
ting up the price." Your broker is instructed to buy certain 
stock at a specified limit. In the coui'se of the day this stock 
ma}^ fluctuate a few dollars above and below the limit fixed. 
The broker buys it, say at the lowest rate during the day. 
When he turns it over to the customer he charges the highest 
price it reached. Brokers frequently make from one to five 
dollars per share in this way, besides their regular commis- 


Recently the "put" and "call" system oi gambling in 
stocks has been introduced in San Francisco. A "put" 
privilege is a contract whereby a person pays one dollar per 
share, for the privilege of all the stock may fall inside of 
fifteen days, counting from the price agreed upon — which 
ranges from one to ten per cent, below the market price on 
the day of purchase. A " call" is just the reverse — the privi- 
lege of a rise being given. Occasionally when a stock rises 
or falls very rapidly, the invester in a " put" or " call " may 
realize considerable profit, on a small investment. But gen- 
erally the price fixed, above or below the market rate covers 
the fluctuating of the stock for the fifteen or thirty days, and 
the investment is lost. 

Many persons of small capital buy on a "margin." In this 
way their capital represents a greater number of shares than 
if they bought it outright. If there is an advance, it is a 
profitable investment; if a decline, it is often exceedingly dis- 
astrous. More money is lost by this style of dealing than in 
any other way. It is simply to advance twenty-five or fifty 
per cent, of the cost of the stock; the broker purchases it, and 
retains the custody of it for security, charging full commis- 
sions and a certain rate of interest for the amount he can-ies. 
If, in the event of a decline, the purchaser can raise sufficient 
money to pay what is back on it, the stock is then delivered to 
him and he can hold or sell, at pleasure. But experience 
shows that those who huj on a margin seldom have money to 
redeem with; so when a decline comes, the broker, to save 
himself, sells the stock, and if there be any money left after 


paying himself, turns it over to the purchaser. In the trans- 
action he has lost perhaps half of his investment, and in some 
instances, all. 


A writer, speaking of a life in Wall street, New York, says: 
" Men who live in "Wall street live fast, and grow j^rematurely 
old. They gamble in stocks all day. They renew the contest 
in the hotels at night. Sunday brings some of them no repose. 
They live high, drink deep, and the excitement in stocks dur- 
ing the day is exchanged for gaming at night. Bald heads on 
young men, premature graj' hau's, nervous debility, paralysis 
and untimely decay, which mark so many of the business men 
of New York with ruined fortunes and characters, show how 
j)erilous and unsatisfactory is life in Wall street." This is 
23artl3^ applicable to California street in San Francisco. While 
some quit the confusion and excitement and retire to the quiet 
of private life with indej)endent fortunes, many cling to it with 
the tenacity of despair, appearing in their accustomed i:)laces 
day after day until driven into seclusion by extreme poverty, 
or checked in their exciting career by death. 





THE puljiit, the rostrum, the world of letters, and human- 
ity at large, lost an able advocate and ornament in the 
death of Thomas Starr King. He died before the zenith of 
his powers had been attained. Only the first siDarklings of 
his brilliant talents had been emitted. 

Thomas Starr King was born in New York, December 16, 
182-i. His father was an Universalist minister, whose death 
occurred when Thomas was but a boy. The family was left, to 
a great degree, dependent upon him. Between the age of 
twelve and twenty he was employed as clerk or school teacher, 
during which time he was a hard student, — applying himself 
principally to Theology. "When he was twenty-one years old 
he preached his first sermon, and at the age of twentj'-four was 
called to the pastoral charge of Hollis Street Unitarian Church, 
Boston. He found the congregation much divided and dis- 
satisfied with each other. His first object was to effect a recon- 
ciliation, and restore harmony among the members. He there- 
fore applied himself to the task of teaching them that broth- 
erly love was among the first principles of godliness; that 
harmony and order were Heaven's first laws. Hy his own 
conduct he exemplified his teachings. His efforts were suc- 
cessful, and the church thereafter was exceedingly prosperous. 

By his gentle spirit and loving counsel, as well as by his 
able advocacy' of the cause in which he was engaged, he came 
to be so loved of his flock that it was the greatest sacrifice of 
his life to part from them. But his health was failing and he 
was advised to tiy the effect of a milder and more equable 

In 1860 he received a call from the Unitarian Society of San 


Francisco. He had been witli his Boston congregation for 
twelve years. Meantime he had given evidence of his orator- 
ical powers, and had also acquired some literary fame. Hi.s 
"White Hills: their Legends, Landscapes, Poetry," a literary 
production of merit, which was produced during these years, 
had rendered the White Mountains classic. When he an- 
nounced before his congregation that he had accepted the call 
of the San Francisco Society, there was a sadness perceptible 
on their countenances, that told plainly how much he was 
esteemed bj^ them, and the regret that was felt at the prospect 
of so early a separation. They remonstrated with him, and 
were urgent in their solicitations for him to remain their pas- 
tor. He sailed from Boston in April, and immediately upon 
his arrival in San Francisco he identified himself not only 
with his church, but with California. He introduced himself 
to the San Francisco public by delivering a series of lectures 
on the agricultural and mineral resources of the State. He at 
once commanded the attention and respect of the audience, 
and before he had done they were held by the speaker as if 
spellbound. The Society over which he was to preside was 
impoverished and weak. It was largely in debt, — $20,000 
hanging over it. In less than a year after Mr. King's arrival 
the debt was paid and the church was in every way flourish- 
ing. Four years later they were worshiping in a new and 
commodious edifice, that had been built at a cost of $90,000; 
and in four years he had finished his labors. 


The physical health of Mr. King was not good. An affectioa 
of the throat frequently gave him trouble. He was a hard 
worker and close student, and the laborious attention to what 
he considered the interests of humanity, tended to undermine 
and weaken a constitution never the strongest. For some time 
before his death, he suffered much from this trouble in the 
throat. He had a strange presentiment that seemed to fore- 
shadow his death, and although he was no believer in signs or 
omens, he certainly gave this forewarning some consideration. 
He had a dream a short time before his final illness, in which 
he thought he was shaving himself, when by accident the razor 
slipped and inflicted a serious gash in his throat. This bled 
profusely; so much so, that a physician was summoned. The 


common remedies were applied to eLeck tke flow of blood, but 
without effect. The physician told him he must die — that it 
was impossible to stop the bleeding. He could not realize 
that the Avound was so serious, and he thought that he held 
the lijDS of the cut firmly together with his hands and urged 
the physician to remain with him. 

The dream, no doubt, was caused by the pain in his throat, 
but yet it was strange that it should end so fatally. The 
malady seemed to have taken deep roots, and was fast per- 
forming its direful work. To the last breath he retained per- 
fect consciousness, and talked as rational and cool concerning 
his death, as if it were only a pleasure tour that he was to 
take. Various details of unsettled business were recalled and 
instructions for settlement given. In the last farewell to his 
friends and kindred he retained perfect composure. 

After his business affairs were arranged he was much ex- 
hausted. He desired to know of his physician how much 
longer he could survive. When he was told that but half an 
hour of life remained to him, he simply said, " This is the 4th 
of March; there will be sad news sent over the wires to-day." 

While his friends were gathered about him, lamenting even 
to weeping, he admonished them to withhold their tears and 
not mourn for him, for he was onl}' entering into the fullness 
of life. In a clear, distinct voice he repeated the psalm wherein 
occurs — 

"The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. 

" He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. He leadeth 
me beside the still waters. * * * * 

"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of 
death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; thy rod and 
thy staff, they comfort me." 

There was a sublimity in this recitation that was beautiful 
and insjiiring, even though it was the expiring words of a 
much-loved friend. He turned to a jjrominent member of his 
church, who was at his bedside, and exclaimed: "Pay the debt 
on my chiirch; don't leave it to my successor. Tell them these 
were my last words." And when he had said good-bye to his 
little boy, and threw him a last kiss as he retired from the 
room, he died. 



Aside from the duties of his profession, Mr. King was an 
arduous worker for the good of humanity. His brilliant pow- 
ers that shone not greater as a speaker than a writer, were 
devoted to the interest of his fellow-man. When he set foot 
on California soil and decided to make his home here, he, with- 
out any hesitation stepped into the front ranks of the leaders 
and worked for the good of his adopted State. The prospect 
for future gi-eatuess of the State inspired his genius, and on 
the platform or at his desk, he labored for the speedy realiza- 
tion of this greatness. 

As an orator, Mr. King took the lead in the State, and there 
"were few his superior on the continent. He at once caught 
the attention of his audience, and whether he spoke at length 
or gave but a brief discourse, they followed every woxxl, and 
were not cognizant of the duration. He warmed the coldest 
audience into enthusiasm. Some said that his musical voice 
held his hearers ; others his genial manner. Some attributed 
liis power to his great earnestness, and there were those who 
said the subjects of his discourses were so well chosen with 
reference to the tastes of his audience, that they could not fail 
to be interested. It matters little how the power is had, he 
that can, at will, provoke a miscellaneous audience to tears or 
laughter, is an orator nevertheless. Mr. King was a strong 
loyalist, and hotly opposed secession in California. The 
"Pacific Eepublic," that was much talked of during those 
turbulent times, met with strong opjDOsition in him. 

His tastes were purely literary. His education had fitted him 
for literary pursuits. Having chosen his own studies, with no 
dictating superior to condemn this or commend that, he fol- 
lowed the bent of his genius which led him into pastures pro- 
lific of food for his imagination. His language was refined 
and his style concise, yet brilliant. His eloquence spoke 
through his pen as well as from his lips. Had his life been 
2)rolonged the natural period, his ability would no doubt have 
been recognized throughout the whole country. As it was, the 
localities where his influence was directly put forth, have ob- 
served his death-bed request: " Keep my memory green." 








WILLIAM C. RALSTON was the projector of the Palace 
Hotel, and it was under his personal supervision that 
it was pushed to comiDletion, The ground upon which the 
hotel stands was, previous to its erection, mostly owned by 
Mr. Ralston. There were, however, two or three lots belong- 
ing to other parties, the largest of which was occupied by the 
Catholic Orphan Asylum. "When the erection of the great 
hotel was conceived and its projector had determined that it 
should be built, it became necessary to purchase the lots that 
notched into the block. This business was entrusted to 
Maurice Dore, who succeeded vdth little difficulty in securing 
possession. There was, however, an elderly lady of a specu- 
lative turn, who owned a few front feet, and who stoutly 
resisted the encroachment for awhile. She was finally per- 
suaded to retire with $50,000 coin in hand, — perhaps a trifle 
more than her share was actually worth. 

Previous to the conception of this grand caravansary, Mr. 
Ralston had been offered $1,000,000 for his interest in the real 
estate, by capitalists who designed erecting thereon buildings 
to be occupied by wholesale dealers. It had cost him only 
$400,000, and perhaps to any other person than Mr. Ralston 
the price offered would have been sufficient inducement to part 
with it. He, however, was not favorable to the project of this 
part of the city being occupied by the unobtrusive wholesale 
men, as it would render it too quiet and gloomy, and unfit the 
locality for active business. So the Palace was conceived, and 
Hon. William Sharon consulted, who seized the idea as a good 
one, and immediately agreed to assume half the resi^onsibility. 



An architect was secured and plans drafted and consulted 
upon, but inasmuch as neither "of the gentlemen interested in 
it had had any exj)erience in the hotel business, it was deemed 
necessary to obtain the advice and counsel of a person well 
versed in all the requirements in this line. The architect was 
sent East to examine the principal and more modern hotels 
there, — also bearing a letter of introduction to Warren Leland, 
who was then, in connection with his brother, running the 
Ocean Hotel at Long Branch. Mr. Leland's suggestions were 
so favorably received by the proprietors of the projected Pal- 
ace, that he was invited to come to California and superintend 
its erection. The invitation was accepted, and Mr. Leland 
and Mr. Ralston, assisted by the constructive knowledge of 
the architect, devised the plan that now stands realized in the 
immense structure. 

The superintendent of construction — Mr. Henry L. King — 
was appointed, who at once assumed control of everything 
pertaining to the workmen and the supply of material. The 
faithfulness of his supervision finds evidence in the substantial 
character of the pile and its wonderful completeness. 


The hotel is bounded by New Montgomery, Market, Annie 
and Jessie streets, and occupies the whole block. The front- 
age on Market street is two hundred and seventy-five feet, and 
on New Montgomery (where is also the main entrance), three 
hundred and fifty feet. It covers an area of more than ninety 
thousand feet, or about two and one-half acres. The aggre- 
gate length of the corridors is two and one-half miles, the 
periphery of the outer wall a quarter of a mile, and the prom- 
enade on the roof one-third of a mile. There were used in 
its construction thirty-one million bricks, ten million feet of 
lumber, thirty-two thousand barrels cement, thirty-four thou- 
sand barrels lime, three thousand five hundred barrels plaster 
Paris and three thousand three hundred tons of iron. There 
are more than twenty miles of gas-pipe, six miles of sewer- 
pipe, eight miles wrought-iron steam-pipe, and twenty-eight 
miles water-pipe. There are also four hundred and thirty- 
seven bath-tubs, which is an important consideration. There 
are eight hundred and fifty rooms, ofiering first-class accom- 
modations for twelve hundred persons. The dining-rooms — 


of "wbich there are three — have a seating capacity of twelve 
hundred. A fair estimate would place the cost of the build- 
ing, furnished and ready for occupancy, at five million dollars. 


The prevailing architecture might be more properly named 
" San Franciscan," since that which is most conspicuous is the 
bow-window, there being no city in the world that gives this 
style more prominence. The Doric column and low arch 
l^redominate in the interior; the column never employed 
singly, but always in pairs. The edifice is seven stories high 
— the average altitude of each story being sixteen feet. The 
bow-windows that appear story after story in bewildering suc- 
cession, render a near view of the imjaosing structure some- 
what monotonous. Yet, when the cheer and comfort that they 
add to the interior chambers is considered, no apology is 
needed for their apjDarent obtrusion. 

Perhaps the most striking peculiarity of the hotel is the 
grand court near the centre of the building. This space is 
one hundred and forty-four by eighty-four feet in size, has a 
smoothly-paved roadway for carriages, a promenade tiled with 
marble, and a glass roof over all. Balconies extend entirely 
around it at each story, upon the rails of which are ranged, in 
harmonious blending, choice tropical plants and shrubs, in- 
termingled with evergreens. The court is entered through a 
massive archway lighted by handsome lanterns. This central 
court — by day as light as the outside world, and by night 
brilliantly lit up by hundreds of gas-jets — its glass covering 
affording protection from inclement weather — is a feature of 
comfort that no other hotel in America off'ers to its patrons, 
and is not rivaled in the world. 

Great caution was exercised in the building of the hotel to see 
that no imperfect material or weak masonry entered into its 
construction. It is bound and riveted by a perfect network 
of iron rods and bars, and is as near earthquake-j)roof as human 
skill could devise. 


With the present knowledge of what a hotel should be, it 
would seem that the Palace Hotel is complete in every detail. 
One can enter its doors, dwell therein year after year, and 


have every want supplied. Everything seems to have been 
considered. There are amusements, promenades, and every 
comfort for the mental as v^ell as the physical man. Each 
department is a model of excellence and elegance. The 
kitchen, the laundry, the bar-room, the store-room and offices 
are not lacking in any particular. 

The furniture is peculiar. It was manufactured in San Fran- 
cisco, and is made of California woods. The upholstery is 
rich, yet modest, and the same may be said of the carpets. It 
receives its water from four artesian wells, sunk on the prem- 
ses. The protection against fire is perfect. The building is 
almost fire-proof, yet there are arranged, at proper and conve- 
nient intervals, hydrants with hose attached, so that should a 
fire break out there would be little chance of its spreading. 
Each room also has a thermostatic alarm, indicating at once 
to the office the beginning of a fire. 


Hon. William Sharon, the jDresent proprietor of the Palace 
Hotel, enjoys the reputation of being one of the shrewdest and 
safest business men of San Francisco. 

He was born on the 9th of January, 1821, at Smithfield, 
Jefferson County, Ohio, a small town in that somewhat roman- 
tic region near Steubenville. He is of a Quaker family, whose 
progenitors came to America from England in the time of Wil- 
liam Penn. Mr. Sharon's boyhood was quiet and uneventful. 
He remained at home and attended the public school, except 
at short intervals, when he was engaged on his father's farm. 

Like most boys, when the first symptoms of approaching 
manhood is felt, Mr. Sharon was seized with the desire to "go 
sight-seeing about the world," and therefore, at the age of 
seventeen, purchased an interest in an Ohio River flat-boat and 
started for New Orleans. He was most unfortunate in this 
venture. His boat was wrecked, and his partners proved dis- 
honest — defrauding him of the greater part of his interest. 
After a brief stay at New Orleans he retraced his steps home- 
ward, thoroughly disgusted with humanity at large and enter- 
taining great abhorence for those who had practiced their 
rascality on him. 

When at home again his father gave him an interest in the 
homestead, where he remained for three years, at the expira- 


tion of wliicli time lie had attained his majority. He then 
entered Athens College as a student, remained two years, and 
again turned his attention to the farm, meanwhile applying 
himself to the study of law in the office of Edwin M. Stanton, 
afterwards Secretaiy of War. His failing health, however, 
caused him to seek a change of climate, and he therefore re- 
43aired to St. Louis. He took with him letters of introduc- 
tion to Hon. Edward Bates of that city, whose acquaintance 
proved of advantage to him. Here he apphed himseK to his 
law studies, and in a short time was duly examined and ad- 
mitted to practice in the courts of Missouri. His health con- 
tinued so delicate that he abandoned the law entirely, and in 
1844 he formed a partnership with his brother. Dr. John K. 
Sharon, and the new firm engaged in mercantile business at 
Carrolton, Illinois, a small town about fifty miles distant from 
the State Capital. He continued in this business until the 
spring of 1849, when, the California gold fever having as- 
sumed an epidemic form in that section, he, in company with 
Col. J. D. Fry, came across the plains to California. After 
stopping a short time in Salt Lake they proceeded to Sacra- 
mento, where in August of that year Mr. Sharon bought a 
stock of goods, ojDened a store and engaged in general trade. 
By the flood in the Sacramento river the following winter, 
which proved so disastrous to Sacramento, his stock and store 
were swept away. He was fortunate enough, however, to 
have something left, and gathering the remnant of his fortune 
together he came to San Francisco and engaged in buying 
and selling real estate. He was in paiinership with Dr. Bev- 
erly Miller for a time. 

From the time Mr. Sharon settled in San Francisco he 
worked for the interest of the city. His enterp)rise manifested 
itself in various building imiDrovements, and he gave encour- 
agement and support to many infant industries that were then 
springing up. He remained in the real estate business until 
1864, at which time his earnings amounted to a sum total of 

In 1864 the Board of Brokers was organized, and Mr. Sharon 
embarked in stock speculations. In six months from his 
first " deal " he had lost all his capital. In this impoverished 
condition he applied to the Bank of California for employ- 
ment. This institution dispatched him to Virginia City, Ne- 


Tada, to attend to some outstanding business, -whicli he duly- 
adjusted. He thought Virginia City a good ^Doint for an 
agency of the Bank, or a branch business, and suggested this 
idea to the managers. The branch was estabhshed, and Mr. 
Sharon placed at its head. He was given full control of its 
affairs, and conducted the business very successfully. He 
kept this position for several years, when he retired, and was 
succeeded by Mr. A. J. Kalston. 

Mr. Sharon's residence in 'Virginia City, together with his 
connection with the Bank, gave him a good opportunity to 
watch the progress of the development of the great Comstock 
mines. This opportunity did not pass unimproved. He se- 
cured various interests in the Washoe mining district that 
gave him such control of the mines that he was denominated 
the "King of the Comstocks." These interests also yielded 
immense profits. 

An example of Mr. Sharon's shrewdness and tact, as well as 
business ability, is furnished in the history of the building of 
" Sharon's crooked railroad" from Eeno to Virginia city. He 
comprehended the necessity of such a means of transit, and 
his foresight warned him of the profits that would accrue to 
the owners of the road. He secured a subsidy of $500,000, 
which he expended to the best advantage on the road, then 
mortgaged the incomplete work for money to finish it, and 
pushed it to completion without having invested a dollar of 
his own in the enterprise. His profits from this road have 
been enormous, being estimated by persons who profess to 
know at $12,000 per day. 

As a stock operator, Mr. Sharon has been very successful. 
This is due to his shrewd business tact and management. He 
is quick to see and does not hesitate to act. 

Mr. Sharon's political opinions are in harmony with the Ke- 
publican party. He is no politician, although in 1872 he con- 
tested with John P. Jones for the United States Senatorship 
from Nevada. He withdrew, however, in favor of Mr. Jones 
on condition that he should be the nominee of his party for 
the Senate in 1874. These conditions were carried out, and 
Mr. Sharon was elected to succeed Senator Stewart. 

In 1852 Mr. Sharon was married to Miss Malloy, a native of 
Canada, and daughter of Captain Malloy, of the Canadian 
Mercantile Marine. Mrs. Sharon was a lady of great refine- 


ment and culture. She died in May, 1875. They had five 
children, three of whom are living. The marriage of theii" 
daughter, which took place a few months i^rior to the death of 
Mrs. Sharon, was the most brilliant social event that has been 
recorded in San Francisco. 

Personally, Mr. Sharon is medium in stature, and of slight 
figure. He dresses in j^lain black, and makes no display of 
jewels. He is modest, though outspoken. 

He bears an honorable reputation on California street, and 
his business ability is recognized by all. 


The father of Warren Leland was the proj^rietor of a " vray- 
side inn" — The Green Mountain Coffee House — locnted at 
Land Grove, Vermont, a stage station on the main thorough- 
fare traversing that part of the state. The joresent host of the 
Palace Hotel was born in this house. When fifteen years of 
age, he went to New York to assist his brother in the manage- 
ment of the Clinton Hotel. A few years completed his sojoiu'n 
there, when he came to California and engaged in the news- 
paper business, conducting the Pacific News. He was emi- 
nently successful in this venture, and in less than one year 
disposed of his proj^erty, returned to New York and purchased 
the Clinton Hotel. This he conducted successfully until 1852, 
when in conjunction with his brothers, he started the Metro- 
politan Hotel, which jDroved to be a popular resort, especially 
for old Californians. He continued in charge of this for twenty 
years, and then turned his footsteps in the direction of Sara- 
toga, the most fashionable eastern summer resort. He and his 
brother jDurchased an interest in the Union Hotel at that place, 
and were exceedingly successful until forced to retire by the 
speculative disposition of a New York combination. With 
wisdom akin to prescience they looked about them, and in the 
near future beheld Long Branch the great resort of the pleas- 
ure loving poj)ulace of the continent. With New York on the 
one side and Philadelphia on the other, convenient of accesa 
and great natural advantages, they believed this point the most 
favorable locality for starting a hotel. They therefore secured 
the Ocean Hotel at Long Branch, and not only the Lelands 
prospered, but Long Branch itself enjoyed renewed life. 
President Grant purchased a cottage there, and this alone was- 


sufficient for a great influx of recreators. Charles Leland — 
Warren's brother — when the President went into summer 
quarters there, very appro]Driately called it, "The Summer 
Capital," which significant title it still retains. It was at the 
Ocean House, Long Branch, where the representative of Mr. 
Ralston intercepted Mr. Leland, and since that time he has 
been a resident of San Francisco. 

The whole of the Leland family seem to be specially c[uali- 
fied for, and attracted to, the position of landlord. Of Mr. 
Leland's near relatives, there are six occupying the position of 
proj)rietor and landlord of leading hotels. The Leland's Stur- 
tevant House, New York; the Delavan House at Albany; the 
aristocratic Clarendon, Saratoga; the Leland Hotel in Spring- 
field, Illinois; the Eutaw House at Baltimore, and the Ocean 
House, Long Branch. The peculiar qualities essential to this 
position are developed in the Lelands: jDatience and forbear- 
ance, a genial and jovial disposition, making a stranger feel 
at home when in their presence; manliness, with cultivated 
intellects. Besides these, they possess the requisite execiitive 
ability, and are always able to judge whether a thing is done 
well or ill. 






ONE of the chief peculiarities of San Francisco is the cos- 
mopolitan character of her population. There is no 
nation of any importance but has its representatives here. 
Many obscure and almost extinct races are represented. Re- 
mote islands and isolated territories, or districts, have lost 
some of their inhabitants by the attractions in San Francisco. 
The Russian, Austrian, Arabian and Swede, as well as the 
Frenchman, Italian, German and Spaniard, when they arrive 
iresh from their native lands, find on her streets or in the 
business-houses those who speak their mother tongue. Be- 
cause some have drifted here and taken up their abode, others 
have followed after, until the foreigner, of whatever nation- 
ality, feels not that isolation that is so often the lot of those 
who quit their fatherland for foreign shores. 

The existence of this foreign element in San Francisco has 
greatly contributed to her progress. The pluck and courage 
that prompted their migration has manifested itself in the en- 
terjDrising efforts put forth in the various avocations the}^ have 
<;hosen to follow. Few drones are among them. Perseverance 
and energy are attended with thrift, and possessing these qual- 
ities the foreign population of San Francisco is a thriving class. 

The German element, perhaps, predominates. The English, 
French and Italian inhabitants are numerous. The native Cal- 
ifornians (though not, properly speaking, foreigners) are well 
represented in the city. These latter, however, as a rule, be- 
take themselves to the country, and find more pleasure in their 
•quiet and somewhat romantic pastoral life than mingling in 
ihe bustle and tumult of the city. 



The sturdy German quickly becomes sufficiently American- 
ized to see the advantages to be had in any avocation, and 
whether in accordance with his favor or not, if the opportunity 
offers, steps in and takes the reins. He left the home and 
friends in " Faderland," to gain a fortune in the new jDarts of 
the New World, and though he shows much sagacity in choos- 
ing his pursuit, he does not hesitate to engage in any business 
where the profits add sufficient to his capital. Yet he does not 
forego the Bier Halle; the fragrant fumes from his favorite iveed 
tempts him to traffic in that article. He presides at the market- 
stall and is found behind the counter at the baker's. He is 
our best mechanic, and is therefore to be found at the work- 
bench and in the machine-shop. A brewery would be incom- 
plete without its German proprietor, and the beer garden with- 
out its German patrons. He excels in music and is a scientific 
student as well as tutor. His jDresence in San Francisco and 
in America is indispensable. 

Johnny Bull, wherever we find him, indulges the hope that 
he will at no remote time have the controlling interest in all 
the good things that abound. "We therefore find him engaged 
in every branch of business. In America he does not take to 
the professions as readily as to the trades. This, however, is a 
fact with all classes of foreigners. He is -our banker, mer- 
chant, mine-owner, capitalist and mechanic. He is engaged 
in the most menial pursuits. He is generally industrious and 
makes a good living. He lives well, is fond of healthful sport, 
and grows portly because he enjoys life and drinks London 
porter. In America he sticks to the old English habit of 
thoroughness — a habit by no means condemnable. He is very 
sanguine and self-assured, sometimes officious. Even though 
his qualities were such as to cause us to feel he had better 
have remained a subject of the Queen, the near relationship ex- 
isting between us would influence us to give him countenance. 

The French and Italian citizens pursue their favorite avoca- 
tions, the one with that dash and enthusiasm so suggestive of 
the land whence they came — the other with that easy and non- 
chalant air that the sunny clime which once they called their 
home begets and nourishes. 

The greater number of the laboring class are foreigners. Den- 


mark and Sweden furnish many of these. Ireland and Scot- 
land have sent then' sturdy sons, 


The pilgrims that first set foot on New England soil brought 
•with them no resources but their own courageous hearts, in- 
domitable wills and brawny hands. They had discourage- 
ments, disapj)ointments and reyerses — yet they persevered, 
overcame, and prospered. Thexj were foreigners. That same 
spirit of enterprise, and the energetic labor that they dis- 
played and performed, has ever been a characteristic of the 
majority of the foreign population of America. When the 
immigration to California began, none but the most cou- 
rageous and daring of Americans would venture on the uncer- 
tain journey. This was also true of the foreigners who un- 
dertook to sail two oceans that they might share the benefits 
of El Dorado. 

It is therefore a gratifying fact that the foreigners of San 
Francisco as a class are just such citizens as she has needed — 
full of enterprise, industrious, and intelligent. The influence 
they have exex'cised over the prosperity of the city has been 
for good. Their industrious habits have been emulated by 
her own people. Yankee ingenuity and push, dii'ecting the 
untiring efi'ort of the foreigner as he put his strong shoulder- 
to the wheel of progress, has lifted California out of a semi- 
obscurity and placed her in the first rank of States, and has- 
built up out of the little Yerba Buena of twenty-five years 
ago a city whose commercial standing transcends many that 
have double the population. 

The eflfect on society has perhaps been detrimental. Mor- 
ality has been at a discount. Social vices have apparently 
been nourished. The commingling of the different nationali- 
ties seems to have bred dissolute habits. "With many for- 
eigners the Sabbath is not respected, but this is also true of 
our native population. Where this is wholly disregarded, as 
it has been by many in San Francisco, immorality is certain 
to take root. Experience teaches this. There must be some 
definite restriction on the wayward. The law cannot set a 
boundary, although society can. So when society is connipt, 
then follow^ these evil results. This eril is not charged en- 
tu'ely to the foreign population; it has been forwarded as well 
by the "free born American citizen." 


The jDublic schools of San Francisco oAve much of their ex- 
cellence to the foreign element. Different nations have differ- 
ent ideas as to the manner of educating their subjects. Yet 
all highly civilized nations are greatly advanced in education. 
With representatives from these different countries taking a 
lively interest in the public schools, presenting the ideas of 
education that exist in their resjDective countries, there has 
been resolved from out these diverse opinions a system for 
instruction that is hard to excel. 

The customs and habits growing out of American civiliza- 
tion have tended to deteriorate the j^hysical man. The strong 
and physically developed foreigner coming among us operates 
as a check upon this disastrous tendency. The manly sports 
and exercises that they have introduced have already proven a 
boon to many, and ere long, effeminacy among the male 
Americans will be regarded as womanliness. Let us all say 
■welcome to intelligent foreigners. 


YI. * 






THE numerous eating-bouses that abound and seem to tbrive 
in San Francisco, suggest tbe idea tbat tbere must be many- 
persons wbo board exclusively at restaurants. The custom of 
restaurant living tbat obtained in early times, when tbere were 
no homes in San Francisco, and all the population were full 
grown men, bas not yet been abandoned. "Winn's Fountain 
Head" and "Winn's Branch," that were then so famous, it is 
true, have passed away, but others even more pretentious have 
risen in their stead, to find as liberal a patronage among the 
citizens as was bestowed upon their predecessors by the rest- 
less gold-hunters of yore. 

It is an acknowledged fact that no city offers more induce- 
ments to the saloon business than San Francisco. The restau- 
rateur has not less encouragement. There are chop-houses, 
coffee-houses, oyster "grottoes," lunch-rooms and restaurants 
in bewildering abundance in every street, lane or alley where 
are located a respectable number of business houses. Through- 
out the resident part of the city they are met at frequent inter- 

The French, the German, the Italian, the Spanish, the 
China, and the American nationalities, all have their respective 
eating-houses or restaurants. In respectability and quality of 
the cuisine they vary very much as to their locality. 


Everybody. There is scarce a person in the city but that 
takes an occasional " meal" at a restaurant. Those who have 


all the home-comforts in their residences, with well-stocked 
larders and unexceptionable culinary arrangements, ofttimes 
go out to the Maison Doree to dine. The female portion of the 
household do this for a change ; the males, for a convenience. 

The gentleman repairs to his office in the morning and does 
not return home until the business hours have passed. He 
gets his lunch at a restaurant. He makes it a rule to dine at 
home; but not unfrequently he ignores this rule and with a 
message disj^atched to his family that "press of business pre- 
vents him from going home to dinner," he invites, or is invited 
by, a friend, to dine at the " Poodle Dog," or some other fash- 
ionable restaurant. 

Clerks, bookkeepers, i^rinter-boys, and young men engaged 
in all the various departments of business; young mechanics 
and laborers, and many of the working females, occupy hired 
furnished apartments and board at restaurants. 

The restaurant fosters the lodging-house, and the lodging- 
house in turn furnishes the restaurants many patrons. It is 
for the restaurant-livers that the sign that occurs on so many 
door-posts, " Furnished Rooms to Rent," is displayed. 

Small families often secure furnished apartments, convenient 
to an eating-house, so as to be rid of the kitchen cares. Ele- 
gant mansions, whose occupants the stranger would naturally 
conclude were wealthy persons, are let to numerous tenants of 
the " shabby genteel" class, who receive their distinguished 
guests into " my parlor," and recline day after day upon "my 
silken cushions," and whose worldly effects comprise nothing 
but the clothes they have on their backs. The cheap restau- 
rant feeds them. By this means they delude many of their 
associates as to their circumstances. 


This is perhaps the most fashionable restaurant in San Fran- 
cisco. It is at No. 217 Kearny Street — the centre of the most 
frequented thoroughfares. The up-town belles, when out on a 
shopping tour, stop at the Maison Doree for a lunch or to dine. 
Stock actors of local celebrity, who get good weekly salaries, 
are frequent callers there. High-toned young gentlemen who^ 
sport delicate canes, glossy hats, spotless kids and unruffled 
linen, patronize the Maison Doree while the sun shines. After- 
theatre-suj)pers are indulged in there by the more favored of 


the beau monde. Distinguished traveling visitors are enter- 
tained there by their friends. It is the Delmouico of San 
Trancisco. The man of moderate means, who practices econ- 
omy, does not feast at the Maison Doree. 

For the last few years Campi's Italian restaurant has enjoyed 
high repute among those of epicurean tastes, on account of its 
excellent cuisine. Notwithstanding its unpleasant proximity 
to the odorous fish and fowl markets, it is very libei-ally pat- 
ronized. The projDrietors are Italians, and also all the waiters 
and other employees. It is the Italian cookery that attracts 
its customers 

It is in a convenient locality for many of the business men, 
and is therefore patronized largely by them. Meals are served 
a la carte, or by the regular Italian dinner course. From 1 to 
2 o'clock p. M. is the common lunch hour, and at that time it is 
almost impossible to obtain a seat at Cami^i's. The waiters 
are very attentive, and as a class are more intelligent than ai*e 
found in the ordinary American restaurant. 

The national Italian dish — macaroni — occupies a prominent 
place on the bill of fare at Campi's, and does not lack popu- 
larity among their American jDatrons. They are also very pro- 
fuse with oils, for salad and sauces, and in the preparation of 
dishes for the Italian palate they are very important ingredi- 
ents. Fish is much esteemed by them as an article of diet. 
The charges at Campi's are a little higher than the popular 
restaurant prices. 


Perhaps the most popular, and the one that is most jDatron- 
ized by all classes — rich as well as poor — is the United States 
restaurant, at the corner of Clay and Montgomery streets. As 
its name suggests, it is an American establishment. 

The prices charged at this restaurant are presumably as low 
as good wholesome food can be furnished. One dish for fif- 
teen cents, or three for twenty-five cents. Of course when 
extras are desired a price in proportion to the rariness of the 
dish is had; for ordinary food, however, the above popular 
p»rices are maintained. 

It would be a matter of wonder and surprise to any one un- 


acquainted Avith the eating habits of San Franciscans, to spend 
a day inside this restaurant and observe the great number of 
j)ersons that it feeds. A fair estimate of the number of meals 
served per diem at this one eating house woukl place the daily 
average at three thousand. On extra occasions the number 
is swelled to thirty-five hundred. The average daily receipts 
are §600, which would make the average price per meal twenty 

The tables are aiTanged in rows across the large dining 
room, and ordinarily four persons are seated at each. The 
expense of conducting an establishment where so many are 
fed, is of course large. But when the business is conducted 
properly, it is very remunerative. One reason for the exist- 
ence of so many eating-houses is the profit realized from the 


In strolling through the streets such signs as follow are 
frequently- met: — "Ladies' dining parlor, up stairs." " Ee- 
freshments at all houi-s." " Private rooms for suppers — open 
all night." "Chop house — eastern oysters in eveiy style." 
Over the top of the screen that shuts off a public view, can 
be seen brilliant chandeliers, and the pleasant clicking of the 
p)lates and glasses make the hungiy looker-in exceedingly 
anxious to j^ush back the silent swinging door and enter. 
'\Vhen within, the flashy colored drapery that hangs in graceful 
folds, conceals from view those who may be feasting in the 
cozy alcoves or stalls at the side of the main room. A con- 
spicuous card, tells the visitor that refreshments will be served 
in a j)i'ivate room if desired, and also directs him to the 
screened stairway. Young men and young women often meet 
clandestinely at such places, and the anxious parent will never 
be apprised of it. The object of the proi^rietor is to preserve 
secrecy, and therefore persons may come and go at pleasure, 
and have no fear of publicity. If exposure should be made, 
the excuse that is offered is plausible — "they were only in- 
dulging in a plate of oysters," which certainly would be ac- 
ceptable to any one. 

The "Poodle Dog" on the corner of Dupont and Bush 
streets, and "Marchand's," opposite, are famous resorts for 
the "gloved and glossy young men about town." At these 


resorts there is no question as to the excellence of the cuisine. 
The pastry is the most delicate, and the wines the finest 
flavored. The tables are artistically ornamented, and the 
cutlery and ware have the "real" ring. The private rooms 
are gorgeously furnished, and the arrangements for the com- 
fort and luxury of the guest is complete. These places are 
frequented by joersons, both male and female, of questionable 
respectability. The more favored female denizens of Dupont 
street are wined and dined there by their "fellows." Upper- 
ten-dom calls occasionally for a midnight banquet. If a reg- 
istry were kept of all the after-dark patrons, giving also their 
companions, the publicity of it would be a startling disclosure^ 
to the social world. 

Chop-houses, where the edibles are served on a high counter, 
the hungry wretch who aspires to reach them mounted on a 
tall three-legged stool, and where coffee and doughnuts are 
abundantly dispensed, are numerous. Significant titles, such 
as the "Miners' Restaurant," "What Cheer House," are 
prevalent; and down on the water front, "The Sailor's De- 
light" and "Fair Wind," confront the sea-faring man, so that 
even on shore poor " Jack " is constantlj^ reminded of his life 
on the wave by the nautical terms embodied in the signs on 
the saloons and eating-houses. 

The great tendency of San Franciscans to disj^ense with 
the family board and adopt the restaiu-ant or boarding-house 
style of living, perhaps furnishes a clue to the cause of the 
little love and reverence the youth of the city entertain for 
their homes. Indeed, it would seem that restaurant living is 
entirely opposed to domesticity. It interrupts the private 
social intercourse and family meetings of members of the 
same household, and eventually weans them from home; thus 
tending to destroy the very traits and principles that our 
republic would have engendered. 







STANDING" upon the deck of a vessel as it glides out of 
the Bay through the extreme portal of the Golden Gate, 
and looking southward, a line of rugged cliffs that beetle to 
the sea first meets the gaze. Nestled down in a notch cut in 
the jutting rock, a broad low house, surmounted by a flag- 
staff, from which flaunts the brilliant stars and stripes, is de- 
scried. The stranger would, no doubt, at first, suppose this 
to be a fort with frowning visage jealously guarding the en- 
trance to the Golden Gate. But it is nothing more nor less 
than the famous seaside resort — the Cliff House. 

San Franciscans are pardonably vain over the many grand, 
romantic and beautiful natural scenes that are provided to de- 
light their gaze, and of these there is none that calls forth 
more universal admiration than that afforded from the bal- 
cony of the Cliff House. 

To the westward lies the broad Pacific Ocean, with nothing 
to break the boundless view of its generally peaceful surface, 
save the horizon. The immensity of the ocean, its mysterious 
depths, its restless life, together with the illimitable expanse 
of the overarching heavens — at night studded with flashing 
stars, and at day brilliant with the splendor of the sun — fur- 
nish a rich feast for the thoughtful, or are fertile of grandeur 
and magnificence to the superficial observer. The charm of 
enchantment is in the scene. The prospect widens with the 
expansion of the imagination, until in the far -beyond the 
Oriental splendors of the Celestial kingdom loom up to view, 
revealing a land of beauty thronged with millions of queer and 
strangely civilized humans. 

The picturesqueness of the scene in the immediate fore- 


ground is not lost siglit of. But a few hundred yards in front 
are seen tlie Seal Kocks, protruding in abrupt outlines from 
the waves, and upon which are observed hundreds of sea lions, 
varying in size from the baby but a day old, to the gray old 
patriarch, whose weight would turn the scales at three thou- 
sand pounds. They hobble over the jagged rocks, sprawl at 
full length in the sun, leap from f)oint to point, plunge into 
the foaming waters, make graceful detours through the cir- 
cling eddies, ride upon the rolling billows, and return again 
to join their comrades on the rocks. A weird half howl, half 
bark goes up from these inhabitants of both land and deep, 
ceaseless as the roar of ocean. Myriads of wild sea-fowl that 
rest unmolested on the rocks add their mournful screams or 
guttural cacklings to the discordant cadence. 

Animate and inanimate Nature is here seen in strange and 
wild association, 


Not the least delightful feature of a visit to the "Cliff" is 
the ride over the beautiful roads leading to it. Leaving Geary 
street, the drive leads between a cluster of cemeteries — the 
Catholic, Odd Fellows and Masonic on the left, and the Laurel 
Hill or Protestant on the right. Towering in the midst is 
Lone Mountain, whose* peak is surmounted by an immense 
cross visible for miles around. From this point a smooth 
macadamized road extends four miles to the " Cliff." 

Half way to the right is seen the channel or arm of the sea 
that leads to the harbor, and at its narrowest jiart stands out 
Fort Point on the one side, and Lime Point opposite — 
fortifications commanding the entrance to the Bay. 

After ascending a slight grade of half a mile the gleam of 
ocean breaks uj^on the view and is constantly seen until the 
Cliff House is reached. It is a most exhilarating drive, and the 
fresh ocean breeze, so bracing and jiure, contributes to the ex- 
ciuisite enjoyment. 

Another fine drive to the " Cliff" is had by following any 
of tlie four streets diverging from Market street beyond Sixth, 
and entering the Golden Gate Park, from which a delightful 
view is had of Point Bonita, the channel of the Bay, and the 
ocean. Beyond looms up old Tamalpais, whose topmost peak 
is often hid by gauzy clouds, and at its base the ever verdant 


coast-range bills spread out. A superbly constructed road 
leads on to the beach half a mile from the Cliff, which dis- 
tance affords the finest view of the Cliff House and Seal Rocks. 

After a lunch or breakfast such as Capt. Foster will serve, 
the visitor is in just the mood to return by a drive down the 

Turning- off at the creek three miles below, and taking- the 
" Ocean House " road to the city, where it -winds down from 
the summit of the Mission hills, the views on cither side are 
charming. The Old Mission with its time and weather-worn 
adobe church, the ancient graveyard, and the crumbling adobe 
houses — the last relics of the primitive San Francisco — are 
passed. Market street entered and the heart of the city soon 

Another and very popular way of going to the " Cliff," is by 
street cars to Lone Mountain, and thence by the omnibus line 
— which runs every few minutes — over a magnificent macadam 


The Cliff House of itself is something remarkable, though 
its life and warmth is in its genial proprietor. Standing as it 
does on a bleak j^oint of rock, isolated from every other habi- 
tation, and forever facing the terrible ocean, whose winds at 
times make it tremble; whose leaping waves lash its very foun- 
dation, /and whose fogs roll over and envelop it in a gloom that 
is heavier than night, it would seem that it had a charmed 
existence, and we look upon it through a weird atmosphere. 

It was built and opened in 18G3 by Capt. Foster, who was 
for many years connected with the Ocean Steamship ser-sdco 
on this coast. Enjoying as he has the acquaintance of all the 
best citizens of San Francisco for the past twenty years, Capt. 
Foster has made his seaside house the attraction for all the 
first families of the city, as well as for every stranger who 
visits the coast. Many avail themselves of the Hotel accom- 
modations, recently added, and remain a few days to enjoy at 
leisure the magnificent marine views and the invigorating 
ocean air. 

While the visitor always carries &\\ay with him deep-seated 
recollection of the exhilarating air and novel sights to be met 
with at the "Cliff," there will linger sentiments of another 
kind, even less liable to effacement from the memory, visions 


of the palato-teinpting and delicious triumphs of Captain 
Foster's cuisine. 

A drive to the " Cliff" in the early morning, a liearty wel- 
come from Captain Foster, and an hour passed over his hos- 
pitable board discussing the choice contents of his larder, 
and a return to the citj^ through the charming scenery of the 
Golden Gate Park, tends to place man about as near to elysian 
bhss as he may hope for in this world. 







"By their fruits ye shall know them." 

"TXT'HEN William Ealston died, San Francisco lost one of 
V V lier most enterprising citizens. In his early youth he 
gave no promise of extraordinary achievements. Not until the 
fullness of manhood was upon him did those qualities, that in 
later years gave him the rank of a leader, manifest themselves. 
He was born in Ohio in 1826. His father was a mechanic, 
and it was his desire that his son should follow in the path the 
father traveled. Young Ralston, therefore, in his boyhood, 
applied himself to the work-bench, and became quite skilled 
in the use of tools. This, however, was not a congenial occu- 

When still a youth, he threw aside his tools, and quit the 
parental roof. He sought and found employment on a Mis- 
sissippi steam packet, plying between St. Louis and New Or- 
leans. He served in the caj)acity of steamboat clerk for some 
time, giving satisfaction to his emiDloyers. A marked charac- 
teristic in him, and a trait that is always attended with success, 
was his close attention to business. He applied himself to the 
task of mastering his business, and developing it to the highest 
standard. He strived for proficiency. 

During a passage down the Mississippi, his business habits 
and tact attracted the attention of Mr. Cornelius K. Garrison 
of New York, who, being desirous to secure an efficient man to 
act as his agent at Panama, solicited his services. Young Ralston 
at once accepted the position. When he took charge of Mr. 
Oarrison's Panama office, it was at a time when there was hot 


competitioB between that gentleman and tlie Nicaragua Transit 
Com2)an3\ He displayed so much business ability in conduct- 
ing the affairs of this office that Mr. Garrison decided that his 
services would be indispensable in a business that he designed 
engaging in in San Francisco. They therefore embarked for 
California, and arrived at San Francisco in 1854. Mr. Ealston. 
was then in the prime of manhood, being twenty-eight years 
of age. Mr. Garrison associated in business with a Mr. Fretz, 
taking Mr. Ralston into the firm as junior partner. Under the 
firm name of Garrison, Fretz & Ralston a bullion and ex- 
change business was inaugurated, which was conducted suc- 
cessfully for a time, when Mr. Garrison withdrew from the 
firm, and the business was then carried on under the style of 
Ralston & Fretz. 

Shortly after the commencement of the war between the 
States, a business arrangement was effected, wherein Ralston, 
and Fretz united with the firm of Donahoe & Kelly, to do a 
general banking and exchange business, under the firm name 
of Donahoe, Ralston & Co., in San Francisco, and Eugene 
Kelly & Co., New York. This enterprise was wonderfully 
successful. The great rise in gold that occurred succeeding- 
the outbreak of the Rebellion was a fortunate fluctuation for- 
them, and they reaped a most bounteous harvest. The San 
Francisco firm soon took the lead in the banking- and bul- 
lion business in the State. The immense bullion shipments 
from the mines of California and Nevada passed through it» 

The prestige achieved by this sudden turn of the wheel of 
fortune, kindled in the breast of Mr. Kelly, the manager of 
the New York branch, an aspiration to establish in New York 
a banking house that would at once take the lead in that line 
of business. To this Mr. Ralston was oj^posed. At this point 
in his life we find those qualities that ever after identified him 
with California, and more especially San Francisco, coming ta 
the surface. For a business firm whose influence had Avidened 
until it was felt thi-oughout the State, and hadgreatl}' elevated 
San Franciscan institutions in the opinion of the business men in 
Eastern cities and abroad, to at once transfer that influence and 
its interests to another and foreign field, was not, to a man of 
his perceptions of right, justice to that people among whom and 
and by whose patronage it had been so successful. He- 


said, "We have made our money in California; let ns continue 
our business here; and if concentration be deemed advisable, 
let us discontinue our Eastern connections, and build up on 
this coast the enterprise that has been suggested." If it had 
been reputation or honor that prompted the man, it would 
have been natural that he favor the former project. If finan- 
cial gain had beea the sole motive of action, his keen percep- 
tions would have told him to encourage it. For either of 
these considerations policy would have led him to give assent 
to the transfer of the business to the great metropolis. 


The controversy between the members of the firm led to the 
withdrawal from the business of Donahoe & Kelly, and Mr. 
Ralston assumed the full control. The business was trans- 
ferred to the Bank of California, and Mr. Ralston was elected 
to the management. The history of this institution is familiar 
to all. From its inception to its highest financial attainments 
it was identified with the interests of California. It grew in 
influence until its nourishing power was felt throughout the 
whole coast. In times of financial embarrassment of any 
struggling home enterprise it extended a helping hand. It 
was the foster-father of all the infant industries of the coast. 
It nourished the manufacturing institutions. It extended aid 
to the development of the mineral resources of California and 
Nevada. It encouraged agricultural pursuits by tendering- 
material assistance to the farmers. It was the supreme motor 
of progression in the city and State. Rich and poor alike, if 
their undertakings were plausible, were the recipients of its 
benefits. The farmer, the mechanic, the miner, and the 
capitalist found in the Bank of California a friend in need. 
This policy was due to the management of Mr. Ralston. 

The career of the Bank of California had been one of in- 
creasing success. There had been times of depression when a 
financial storm had impended, but this stanch craft had 
weathered every gale, and still rode triumphantly. But ships 
sometimes go down, leaving the cause of the wreck enveloped 
in mystery. There are often found protruding rocks within 
the smoothest water. "Without a warning to the business 
■world, the Bank of California closed its doors and announced 
to the public that it must temporarily suspend business. 


Had the man at the lielm steered clear of breakers ; bad the 
vessel not foundered on a rock, it is possible that his value to 
the community would not have been appreciated. But when 
the great institution that was the heart of the business inter- 
ests of the country became paralyzed, and its arterial flow had 
ceased, then the public felt how vast had been its iufluence, 
and how strong a support it had been to the industries that 
have made San Francisco the great city that she now is. The 
peoj)le then realized that William C. Ralston had, in the man- 
agement of the affairs of the Bank, the interests of the country 
at heart, and although there were some who spoke with con- 
demnation of the course that had culminated in so great dis- 
aster, the general public exj)ressed the deej)est symjDathy 
for the man upon whom the calamity had fallen with greatest 


When this great misfortune came upon the enterprise, the 
success of which had long been, not only the pride of its man- 
ager, but also the boast of Californians, he did not shrink 
from shouldering the burden. His manhood asserted itself, 
and the same principles and rules of action that had always 
been his characteristics still actuated him, and he at once bared 
Jiis arm for the struggle, confident tliat he could lift the wreck 
and establish it on the basis of its former eminence. 

But this was not to be. Two suns had not passed the zenith 
before he had been removed from the managerial office by the 
syndicate of the Bank. He sacrificed all his worldl}^ posses- 
sions to indemnify the patrons of the institution against loss. 
Even his personal jDroperty was thus disposed of. 

Were this the saddest part of what we must relate, there 
would not come up in our bosom those regrets and sorrowful 
emotions that the recording of this sketch begets. Our sym- 
pathies would be aroused, but yet there would be a feeling of 
pleasure commingled, at beholding the man whose spirit mis- 
fortune had endeavored to break, still buoyant with hope, de- 
termined to battle with adversity, and rise again. It would 
seem that this sudden transition from power and affluence to 
dependence and poverty, was sufficient to fill the cu^j. This, 
however, only foreshadowed what was to be. In this brief 
2:)eriod he also gave up his life. 

On the morning after the suspension of the Bank, Mr. Ral- 


ston had visited it to have some conference with the officers. 
He was not gloomy or disheartened, but expressed himself as 
ready to start anew in the battle of life; was cheerful, and 
although it was evident that the action of the Syndicate had 
wounded his sensitive nature, yet he did not manifest any feel- 
ing of humiliation. • Leaving the Bank he repaired to North 
Beach — as was his custom — for an ocean bath. While bathing 
it seems that he was carried out by the current beyond his 
depth. He was seen by some parties near by, apparently 
strugghng in the water, and they thinking he needed assist- 
ance proceeded at once to his rescue. But they were too late. 
Although still breathing when brought ashore, resuscitation 
was not effected. The climax of combined misfortunes was 
reached in this tragic ending of a life that had been so fruitful 
of good results. 


A few days jDrevious to the suspension of the Bank of Cali- 
fornia, two influential daily newsj^apers came out with promi- 
nent editorials — the tone of which reflected discredit upon the 
Bank of California — containing allusions derogatory to the 
character of Mr. Ralston. Articles of similar import were 
j)ublished from day to day, and although they were looked 
upon by most persons as political tirades, it afterward became 
evident that they kindled a feeling of distrust in the public 
mind regarding the condition of the affairs of the Bank. 

Although there was much dissatisfaction occasioned by the 
failure when it was first announced, yet a reaction immediately 
followed, and the sympathy of the public was with the man 
whom fate had chosen as the target of her venomed arrows. 

When the news of his sad death had sj)read throughout the 
city, there was a gloom of deepest melancholy upon almost 
every face. Flags were at half mast. The sable badge of 
mourning was met at eveiy turn. 

Meetings, where thousands of his friends gathered to vindi- 
cate his character and recall his good deeds, were held. The 
plainest mechanics told how, when they had been in need, he 
had extended a helping hand. The commonest laborers re- 
membered now the kind words he had spoken, and encourage- 
ment and aid they had received from him. Brilliant orators 
2oronounced the highest eulogies on his character. It was like 


each individual person had lost a bosom fi-ieud. Speeches 
condemning the attacks of these papers were uttered loud and 
earnest, and were apjDlauded by the multitude. An under- 
sentiment of revenge was manifest, and for a time it was feared 
that a mob would attack the offices of the papers that had con- 
demned Mr. Ralston, and make sad havoc 6i them. 

Alarmed at the danger that was brewing, the proj^rietors of 
these journals armed their employees, called in a posse of the 
city police, and barricaded doors and windows — determined to 
resist any attack. But besides a great excitement there was 
no violent demonstration. 


His value to San Francisco is inestimable. As we have pre- 
viously said, Mr. Ralston was — through his management of the 
Bank of California — a friend to every home industry. Besides 
his influence through the Bank, he personally assisted various 
leading industrial enterprises. He was largely interested in 
the Mission "Woolen Mills ; the Bay Sugar Refineiy ; the Cor- 
nell "Watch Factory; the California Theatre; the Kimball 
Manufacturing Co.; and was one of the principal proprietors 
of the Palace Hotel. His villa residence at Belmont — the 
most commodious and beautiful residence on the Coast — was 
built for the piu-pose of entertaining distinguished visitors 
when they journeyed to our shores. It was to offer that hos- 
pitality that the rank of the visitors and the greatness of our 
city and State demanded. He took it upon himself to enter- 
tain the guests of the country. 

.In his early career as a banker, he reduced the exorbitant 
rate of interest on money that was charged by money brokers. 
In whatever capacity we find him, that unselfish spirit that 
gave him so warm a place in the hearts of the peojile, dis- 
covers itself. His charity was broad, and his liberality ex- 
tended to all who were in need. Although his ambition was 
to accumulate money and create capital, he was no hoarder of 
gold. For the benefits it brought to the community he labored 
to produce capital. 

This was the verdict of the masses, and judging by the 
spirit he manifested and his actions, that verdict is correct. 
Yet it is hard to judge the thoughts of men, and no one can 
tell the motives that prompt their actions. 


The light of events succeeding the suspension of the Bank 
and his death reveals some things that, remaining unexplained 
as they do, cannot but reflect some discredit upon the charac- 
ter of the man whose name it were hoped would forever 
remain untarnished by even a shadow of dishonor. Bat since 
the dark valley of death intervenes to close our intercourse 
with him and shade him from our vision forever, let the mantle 
of obscurity be drojDped over his faults and misdeeds, and let 
his benefactions only be remembered. 

Socially he was a genial companion. Rather retiring in 
disposition, yet at times vivacious and brilliant. His business 
was his study, and close application to this disqualified him 
from shining in society. 

His funeral was the most imposing ever witnessed in San 
Prancisco. He was buried from Calvary Church, and so great 
was the concourse of j^eople that had gathered that the streets 
were lined in every direction. A large procession followed the 
remains to Lone Mountain Cemetery, where, amid the throng 
of solemn faces, the sobbing and weeping of friends and rela- 
tives, the dead body of William C. Ralston was lowered into 
its final resting-place. 

By his fruits let us remember Mm. 







^'"pARBAKY COAST" proper, is in the northerly part of 
I } the city, comj)rising both sides of Broadway and Pa- 
cific streets, and the cross streets between them, from Stockton 
street to the water front. Nearly the whole length of Dupont 
street, running south from Broadway, and many of its intersect- 
ing by-ways, might be called the highlands to this region, as 
most of the dwellers therein are perhaps not a whit less immoral 
and vicious; and only for the distinction that rich apparel and 
some of the refining accomplishments bestow, would be classed 
in the same social grade. Like the malaria arising from a stag- 
nant swamp and poisoning the air for miles around, does this 
stagnant pool of human immorality' and crime spread its con- 
taminating vapors over the surrounding blocks on either side. 
Nay, it does not stop here, for even the remotest parts of the 
city do not entirely escape its polluting influence. 

It is true that inside the limits of Barbary Coast, even among 
•its foulest dens, are some who witness from day to day the 
lowest phases of human depravity and yet remain undefiled. 
These are not there by choice; but by force of circumstances 
are comj^elled to abide in the unhallowed jDrecincts. But the 
great number of those who dwell there have chosen the locality 
as the most fitting place wherein to jiursue their respective 

In the early days of San Francisco, Barbai-y Coast was the 
place of refuge and security for the hundreds of criminals that 
infested the city. When they had passed within its boundary, 
they were strongly fortified against any assault that the officers 


of the law might lead against them. It was, in those days, an 
easy matter for a stranger to enter this fortress of vice, but 
when once behind the walls he was exceedingly fortunate who 
had the opportunity to depart, taking with him his life. Then 
villains of every nationality held high carnival there. The 
jabber of the Orient, the soft-flowing tone of the South Sea 
Islander, the guttural gabbing of the Dutch, the Gallic accent, 
the round full tone of the son of Africa, the melodious voice 
of the Mexicano, and the harsh, sharp utterances of the Yan- 
kee, all mingled in the boisterous revels. 

It was a grand theatre of crime. • The glittering stiletto, the 
long blade bowie knife, the bottle containing the deadly drug, 
and the audacious navy revolver, were much-used imj^lements 
in the plays that were there enacted. There was no need of 
mimic dying groans, and crimson water, for the drawing of 
warm heart-blood and the ringing of real agonizing moans of 
death only, woiild be recognized as the true style of enacting 

"Were the restraining -power of the law and public sentiment 
removed, Barbary Coast to-day could soon develop the same 
kind of outlawry that made it notorious in the primitive days. 
The material is ready at all times, and should the favorable 
circumstances transpire to kindle it into destructive activity, 
scenes as startling as those that won for the locality its chris- 
tening, would be re-enacted. Even in the presence of a strong 
police force, and in the face of frowning cells and dungeons, 
it is unsafe to ramble through many of the streets and lanes. 
in this quarter. Almost nightly there are drunken carousals 
and broils, frequently terminating in dangerous violence; men 
are often garroted and robbed, and it is not by any means a 
rare occurrence for foul murder to be committed. " Murder- 
ers' Corner" and "Deadman's Alley" have been rebaptized 
with blood over and over again, and yet call for other sacrifices. 

Barbary Coast is the haunt of the low and vile of every 
kind. The petty thief, the house burglar, the tramp, the 
whoremonger, lewd women, cut-throats and murderers, all are 
found there. Dance-houses and concert saloons, where blear- 
eyed men and faded women drink vile liquor, smoke offen- 
sive tobacco, engage in vulgar conduct, sing obscene songs, 
and say and do everything to heap upon themselves more deg- 
radation, unrest and misery, are numerous. Low gambling 


houses thronged with riot-loving rowdies in all stages of in- 
toxication are there. Opium dens, where heathen Chinese and 
God-forsaken women and men are sprawled in miscellaneous 
confusion, disgustingly drowsy, or completely overcome by 
inhaling the vapors of the naseous narcotic, are there. Licen- 
tiousness, debauchery, pollution, loathsome disease, insanity 
from dissipation, misery, poverty, wealth, profanity, blasphe- 
my and death, are there. And Hell, yawning to receive the 
l^utrid mass, is there also. 


Some one has remarked that in Eastern cities the j)rostitutes 
tried to imitate in manner and dress the fashionable respect- 
able ladies, but in San Francisco the rule was reversed— the 
latter copying after the former. Admitting this, it is not 
strange that there is much licentiousness here. But San Fran- 
cisco has not yet overcome the immoral habits she contracted 
in the days when the inhabitants were nearly all males, and 
they had nothing to restrain them from engaging in the most 
vicious practices; when there were few mothers to chide their 
waywardness and say in winning tones, " My son, go not in 
the way of evil;" and fewer virtuous sisters to welcome broth- 
ers home, and by their loving kindness and noble lives, to 
teach them to cease from sinning. There was no standard of 
morality, no public sentiment to influence men to lead pure 
lives. Every one was free to do whatsoever he chose, if he 
did not interfere with anybody else, and his conduct was not 
questioned. So it was that in the absence of a restraining 
sentiment they gave full sway to their passions and desires. It 
is possible that this early spirit of libertinism has only been 
curbed by degrees, and the excessive immorality that now pre- 
vails, is the remaining effects of the influence that was once 
so powerful. If this be true (and we believe that it is) but a 
few years will elapse before the last stain shall have been re- 
moved, and perhaps the city will be all the more pure for hav- 
ing had her skirts so long defiled. 

Prostitution in San Francisco knows no such small bounds 
as Barbary Coast. There, because of the character of the* 
place and the people who inhabit that quarter, it only puts on 
a bolder front, making itself more conspicuous. But its soiled 
wings, with baleful forebodings to the youthful sons and daugh- 


ters of this proud city, hover over every neighborhood and 
street. It is the one social blight. It is the secret of many 
family woes and the chief promoter of social discord. Licen- 
tiousness is undermining the foundations that society stands 
upon. What direful events may we not look for if our sons 
are dissolute and our daughters know not virtue ! 

There are few lodging-houses in the city but that are more 
or less used as houses of assignation. Many of these harbor 
professional prostitutes, and the name "lodging-house," as 
applied to them, is only a polite appellation for houses of ill- 
fame. In many of the "respectable" hotels no questions are 
asked as to the relation of suspicious parties who seek to pat- 
ronize them; and of their illicit conduct, no tales are told. 
Even the real first-class hotels are sometimes infested with vile 
women and viler men, but who assume such a respectable de- 
meanor and so disguise their character by rich apparel as to 
deceive the not too-observing landlord. Many private dwelling- 
houses throughout the city where the sign "Furnished Rooms 
to Let" is displayed, give admittance to the most questionable 
characters. This sign is frequently employed to attract young- 
men in search of rooms, and when once they have entered they 
discover that they have been lured into the j^resence of harlots. 
In the most respectable neighborhoods such occupants are 
found. A general laxity of morals is manifest, and every art 
and device is employed to tempt young men and young women 
to depart from the path of virtue; and they, in the buoyancy 
of youthful health and spirits that the voluptuous climate 
begets, are only too willing to be led astray. 

We do not wish to say, or even imply, that San Francisco is 
the wickedest and most immoral city in the world; that her 
men are all libertines and her women all fallen; that she has 
no noble sons and pure daughters. This is only a single chap- 
ter on her wickedest ways — the deepest shade among many 
brilliant lights. But we would say to the parents of San Fran- 
cisco to look closer to their daughters, for they know not the 
many dangers to which they are exposed — know their associ- 
ates, guard their virtue — and to mildly counsel their sons, for 
when upon the streets of this gay city they are wandering 
amid many temptations. 



"Waverly Place, or "Pike" street, is notorious for the bold- 
ness of its vice. It is a short lane or alley between Dupont and 
Stockton streets, on the outskirts of "Barbary Coast." The 
buildings are mostly low frame structtu'es, rickety and dilapi- 
dated — a fit abode for the depraved creatures that find shelter 
within them. At any houi' of the day or nig'ht, sickly, vice- 
worn women, abundantly painted and powdered and gaudily 
attired in the vain attempt to restore their lost charms, may 
be seen ujoon the thresholds or lounging by the open windows, 
half-dead from their excesses, yet perseveringly exerting them- 
selves to win patronage from the vicious and dissipated men 
that loiter on the walks or straggle through the street. The 
heyday of their life of shame has jaast and they are on the 
dechvity whence the descent is sure and swift. 

Down Pacific street, and in the narrow alleys and by-ways 
cutting into it, and also along Broadway for two or three 
blocks — right in the centre of Barbary Coast — are the still 
lower dens of infamy. Here the women are shabbily clad, 
boisterous and almost insane from drink, and the men that 
are met leer at the passer-by with that idiotic expression be- 
gotten by long-continued drunkenness and debauchery. The 
tenements they inhabit are in a tumble-down condition that 
harmonizes with the occupants. Outside, they are weather- 
worn and bedaubed with filth, while within there are bare 
floors, and the furniture is old and scant — everything indi- 
cating extreme jDOverty. A few of the rooms are cosily fur- 
nished, and comparatively cheerful ; but all the surroundings 
show that the denizens of the place are in the last stages of 
human degradation — that the days are past when sinning to 
them had its pleasures ; that disease, death, and that dreaded 
mysterious hereafter will follow respectively, and will come 

If heaven can condone so great sin as theii's, may it be merci- 
ful to the fallen women that dwell in the tenements of Barbarj' 
Coast, and all their sinning sisters ! for among the thousands 
of their kind that abide in the cities of the world there are few 
who were guilty of sin when first they gave up their virtue. 



On Stockton, Dupont, Market and Third streets — and even 
fashionable Kearny shares the dishonor — are found numerous 
higher - class houses of prostitution. These are where the 
wealthy madams dwell in ease and luxury, surrounded by 
beautiful and accomplished young ladies, who for money sell 
flesh, blood and soul, that the mistress of the mansion may not 
be angered. But there are few real elegant houses of this 
character in the city. The spirit of extravagance that pervades 
all classes in San Francisco is particularly manifest among the 
demi-monde. They are essentially "fast," and to surjoass their 
virtuous rivals in this regard requires a vast outlay of money 
for wearing apparel, carriage hire, and the like. This of course 
so exhausts their income that but few are able to maintain very 
elegantly furnished houses. But the interior appointments of 
some of these "abodes of sin" are rich and costly, and many 
are furnished in a style superior to the private dwellings of 
most of the wealthy citizens. 

It is therefore evident that their patrons are wealthy, or 
have large incomes. If a register was kept of the names of all 
who visit these places, and published at stated periods, the day 
of such publication would find many husbands and fathers 
" absent from the city on business," and many young men and 
bachelors confined to their offices from the excess of work such 
absence would put upon them. On that day there would be a 
breeze of indignation among the feminine members of families, 
and in the feminine ranks of society'' there would be many 
epithets and invectives suggestive of brutal conduct uttered 
by lips curled in scorn. There would be wringing of hands 
and Aveeping; and there would be some — but not many — pierced 
and aching hearts. But most all this consternation among the 
belles of society would be assumed for effect, for ihej are often 
secretly apprised of such conduct of the men, and still smile 
upon them and give them countenance. If the women of the 
kmd would as heartily condemn a fallen brother as they do a 
fallen sister, and shun the one as the other, then there would 
be less unmorality. 

We dislike to write it — and it may be offensive to some to see 
in print only an allusion to the disgraceful practices that men 
enjj-age in, but that all are aware of — yet it is a fact, dej)lorable 
as it may be, that prostitution receives as much encouragement 


and support from laen of families as from the unmarried. Es- 
pecially is this true when applied to the more aristocratic and 
retired gilded palaces of sin. Detectives and policemen will 
also tell you that of the many men who secretly keep mis- 
tresses, there are but few who have not famihes. And the 
woman thus related to a man is maintained in greater luxury 
than the wife of his bosom. She rests recure in her comfort- 
able surroundings, for she has only to hint at a public exj)os- 
ure to extort anything from her guilty paramoiu' that she may 

The occupants of the better class houses of ill -fame are 
generally personally attractive, and possess refined manners. 
Many of them have excellent educations, and some have even 
graduated from the best female seminaries. They have all the 
X^etty graces that are acquired only in refined societ}', and were 
it not for the previous knowledge of the character of the house 
the visitor would never know but that he was in the private 
parlor of a wealthy gentleman, and his beautiful and afi'able 
companions were the brightest stars in the most respectable 
society — so chaste are their manners and conversation. Some 
of them have been, and would gladly quit the life they are 
forced to lead, only that society has said. Be ye outcasts forever. 
Thus they must submit to fate, and it is not strange that after 
a while, when their personal charms fade, they grow hardened 
in sin, and make themselves repulsive even to those who now 
gladly seek theii- society. In their secret hearts they soitow 
to the last, and the tenderness that characterizes innocent 
womanhood would fain manifest itself again; but even this 
must be disguised by the look of brazen wantonness that the 
nature of the business that gains them a livelihood necessi- 
tates. So, 

"When lovely woman stoops to folly 
And finds too late that men betray, 
What charm can soothe her melancholy, 
What art can wash her guilt awaj'?" 


The lady boarders in the aristocratic houses of prostitution 
are constantly changing. Three and four months amid luxu- 
rious surroundings, and then the next downward step. This 
is the duration of their stay at the finest houses. Their beauty 
and vivacity has begun to leave them, and they are no longer 


sufficiently attractive to suit the fastidious tastes of the madam; 
they are no longer profitable to her. Therefore, they must go. 
Then follows in raj^id succession the different stages of de- 
cline. But when they leave, their places must be filled. This 
requires the services of the procuress, the runner and agent; 
and more — this endangers the virtue of beautiful and attract- 
ive young- ladies all over the land. None other than these are 
wanted for the first-class houses; the lower grade are overrun 
and turn many applicants away. 

The agent is a shrewd, gentlemanly fellow, with polished 
manner, and withal prepossessing. He is a regular " ladies' 
man." These are numerous or few as the demand calls for. 
They are ever on the alert, looking closely at every lady they 
meet. They frequent pleasure resorts, jDublic exercises at fe- 
male seminaries, fashionable churches and hotels; they are 
aboard steamers and railroad trains, and follow the stream of 
gay life wherever it flows. 

When they have discovered a young lady that suits, by 
strategy or otherwise, they get an introduction, and soon by 
having made themselves very agreeable and entertaining, are an 
accepted escort. They attend church and parties together. 
The trap is now ready to spring, and at a prearranged dinner 
party or refreshment table, the lady is drugged, her person 
violated, and when consciousness returns to her, she realizes 
her disgrace, and is easily led to final ruin. High prices are 
j)aid for very beautiful girls, and such are therefore in greater 

This is only an instance of how the unholy work is done. 
Various other means are employed. The procuress is gener- 
ally a motherly old woman, whose silvery locks and matronly 
appearance would naturally win respect. She has not much 
difficulty in approaching the young ladies, but it requires tact 
in her to lure them where she wants them. She has a male 
accomplice who relieves her of her charge and the dastardly 
crime is soon perpetrated. 

The chosen victims are generally the buxom daughters of 
rural villagers — the belles of the towns — and young ladies who 
reside in the country, but have visiting acquaintance in the 
city. The more remote the home of the young lady is from 
the city, the less fear is had of detection. Cases of seduction 
are not unfrequent, and these are ofttimes accomplished for 


tlie purpose of refilling the oft-vacated rooms in the boarding- 
houses of ill-fame. A few young ladies are ruined by confid- 
ing too much to villainous lovers, who, only to gratify passion, 
blight the hopes of their most devoted female friends. These 
sometimes voluntarily seek to bide their shame in the palaces 
of sin, but the greater number are victims sought out and en- 


On the corner of California and Stockton streets stands 
Grace Church; but a block below, at the corner of California 
and Dupont, is St. Marj'^'s Cathedral. In the one the wealth- 
iest and most aristocratic Episcop)al congregation in the city 
.worships; in the other, the pride of Catholicism in San Fran- 
cisco praises God for His blessings. Devout Christians as- 
semble at these churches and engage in the solemn service of 
the sanctuary. The loveliest of lovely women and noble men 
thither repair upon the Sabbath day, and unite their voices in 
praise and thanksgiving for the goodness and mercy of the 
Lord, that has continually followed them. Within those walls 
there is evidence that this is a Christian city — a block away the 
streets are lined with houses of prostitution; and a stone's 
throw beyond, is Barbary Coast reeking in infamous filth. 

Nearly half a score of churches point their spires heaven- 
ward in this immediate vicinity, indicating the upward way 
that leads to life; two days in every week the bells in those 
steeples sound the call to assemble and worship, and the wor- 
shipers who meet in these temples of religion, accept that 
Bible that pronounces a great woe uj)on the workers of iniq- 
uity; that visits vengeance ujoon crime; that utters a curse 
upon adultery; that denounces harlotry as one of the most 
dangerous evils, and sets up the warning, •' Beware! go not in 
her way!" 

Kearny street at night, until the hour of ten is struck, is a 
brilliant scene of gayety and life. It is thronged with all 
classes of human beings that fui^nish the motive power to a 
city's progression. Male and female, rich and p)Oor, the ai'tist 
and the unskilled laborer, youth, age and beauty, are mingled, 
forming a constant, moving stream of life. The shop win- 
dows are richly decorated, and within flash brilliant lights. 
The scene is interesting, is pleasing, and impresses the ob- 


server with the beauty, grandeur and value of a high civiliza- 

Dupont street, running parallel to this scene, is likewise in 
its gayest dress. But how different is the picture ! There are 
uiDon the street skulking groups of men with muffled faces, 
who seek its darkest side lest they be recognized by others 
likewise shunning observation; bold, boisterous fellows, utter- 
ing oaths and obscene jests; but not a single female form is 
seen unless it be a flitting figure moving rapidly along and sud- 
denly disappearing in another street. But i^eeping through 
the window-shutters, or standing at the thresholds, door after 
door, block after block, are women whose calling is branded 
on their foreheads, may be recognized in the twinkling of their 
eyes, and is boldly called out to you as you pass along the walk. 
The doors are left slightly ajar, or the blinds turned, so that 
he who will may look within. In their rooms is a warm, hazy 
light, and everything is invitingly arranged. Almost every 
passer-by is hailed, and invited in. If he declines, he is urged; 
and if he still refuses, he is entreated and sometimes taken by 
the hand and playfully forced to enter. These are some of 
San Francisco's inconsistencies. It is a disgrace to San Fran- 
cisco, a stain uj^on her brow; but it is more disgraceful to those 
IDrojoerty-holders and speculators who permit their tenement 
houses to be used for such vile purposes. 







IN the heart of the money centre of San Francisco is located 
the building occupied by the Safe Deposit Company of San 
Trancisco. It has a frontage on Montgomery street of 137J 
feet, and 68| feet on California street. The building is five 
stories high, and the material used in its construction is iron 
and ornamental stone. It is majestic in its proportions. The 
architecture is highly ornamental but is harmonious in all its 
outlines. It is a perfect model of strength and symmetry. 


The Safe Deposit Company was incorporated in 1874, and 
the building was completed and business inaugurated in the 
fall of 1875. Eugene Casserly was elected President, and J. 
W. Raymond Vice-President and Manager, with B. F. Le 
Warne Secretary. The capital stock of the company is two 
million dollars, divided into twenty thousand shares of one 
hundred dollars each. The sole object of the company is to 
provide an absolute safe place of dei:»osit for treasure, money 
and valuables, a provision greatly needed in every city. With 
this aim in view they have constructed their vaults so as to be 
proof against fire and water and the most ingenious burglars. 
It is a matter of impossibility for the bank robbers, with all 
the skill and mechanical aid they can command, to gain en- 
trance to these vaults. 


The construction of the vaults is simple in general outline, 
but complicated in detail. The plan adopted is one immense 
vault, inside of which the thousands of small vaults are ar- 


ranged. The largest dimensions of the main vault are thirty 
by thirty-five feet, and eleven feet high. The walls, floor and 
ceiling of this is a solid fire-j^roof casing composed of burglar- 
proof metal, in thirty courses of steel and iron, welded and 
bolted securely. 

Within this impregnable cell are four thousand sis hundred 
small safes, built in solid tiers, the doors of each being fur- 
nished with key and combination locks of the finest construc- 
tion. Surrounding the great vault is a corridor completely 
inclosed by a network of iron and steel, and here continually, 
night and day, the armed patrol, under charge of the superin- 
tendent, make their rounds. 

The small safes are made of burglar-proof material, and each 
door, besides having the combination locks, is provided with 
key escutcheons, the key to which is in the hands of the officers. 
This renders it necessary for an officer to alwaj^s attend the 
renter to his safe, as it is impossible for him to unlock it, un- 
less he first have the officer release the escutcheon. There is 
also an ingenious contrivance which prevents the withdrawal 
of the key until the safe is again locked by the renter. 

Upon entering the vault-room an imposing sight greets the 
eye. The vaults stand out as a monument of mechanical skill. 
The engravings of the vaults and vault-room, the different 
avenues around it, the massive entrance and exit doors, the 
offices for renters, and the ladies' parlor, all impress one with, 
the grandeur and beauty displayed in their construction. 


The safes, and the vault in which they are placed, were 
planned and constructed by the most skillful mechanics, and 
under direction of the company's engineers. The quality, not 
the cost, of the work was considered. No two locks are alike; 
hence there is no danger of a renter, if he be so inclined and 
opportunity offers, opening any other than his own safe. 
Every renter, before being admitted to the vaidt, must be 
identified by the proper officer. With every change of renter 
the lock is also changed. A satisfactory introduction is inva- 
riably required of a renter before he can obtain a box. 

When the company was organized, Mr. F. E. K. Whitney 
was appointed to the position of Superintendent of Vaults and 
Chief of Patrol. Mr. Whitney has under him five patrolmen. 


■who are citizens of known reputation and undoubted integrity. 
They are armed and uniformed, and guard the j)i'eiiiises day 
and night. Every thirty minutes, communication is had "be- 
tween the armed watch outside and the patrol within. A tele- 
graphic rejDort is sent half hourly to the Police Headquarters. 
The windows are strongly barred and the room is brilliantly 
lighted all night. With these precautions it is scarcely possible 
that any attack ujDon the vaults would jjrove successfid. 

There are four sizes of safes, and these are rented by the 
day, month or year, at prices varying as to their size. With so 
secure a depository for valuables, there is no reason why any 
future conflagration in San Francisco should destroy anj' very 
important documents or valuables. 


There is no jDerson to whom is due more credit for the com- 
pleteness and security of the vaults and building of the Safe 
Deposit Company, than Mr. J. C. Duncan — its projector. Being 
an old resident of the city, and having been long identified -SN-ith 
its progressive interests, he fully understood the need of an 
institution of this character. His sagacity discovers itself in 
the fact that he awaited patiently the coming of the time when 
the people would heartily co-operate in the enterjDrise. When 
that time did come, he did not let it pass unimproved, but 
quickly seized the opportunity, initiated the project and pushed 
it to completion. 

He organized the company, and his personal supervision was 
given to the erection of the building, with its immense vaults. 
He not only has the satisfaction of Aiewing the realization of 
his plans in this magnificent structure, but is also apprised by 
the patronage extended that the public fully appreciate his 

Mr. Duncan is the largest stockholder in the company. He 
is also largely interested in the Pioneer Land and Loan Bank 
of Savings, which occuj)ies rooms on the first floor of the Safe 
Deposit Company's building, and holds the office of Secretary 
of that institution. It is by the enterprise of such men as 
Mr. Duncan that San Francisco has made such rapid strides 
in material progression, and to whom is due an acknowledg- 
ment of their labors. 







PENNSYLVANIA was honored by her Girard. She is also 
honored again by having produced a James Lick. France 
has the credit of the former's nativity; but Pennsylvania fostered 
and developed him, and on her was bestowed his benefactions. 
It was reserved to the young and vigorous State of California 
to nurture the latter, and she has reaped the benefits. 

James Lick was born in Fredericksburg, Pennsylvania, 
August 25, 1796. His grandfather was a native of Germany 
and emigrated to America in time to serve in the army of the 
Kevolution. His father was a Pennsylvanian by birth. James 
had but meager educational advantages, receiving only the 
benefit of the common schools, which in those days were, 
perhaps, models of strict discipline, but wanting in excellence. 

When yet in his boyhood, he was employed by an organ- 
maker at Hanover, and with him learned the first principles of 
the trade that he afterward followed. In 1819 he was given 
a situation in a prominent piano factory at Baltimore, Mary- 
land. The following year he was attracted to Buenos Ayres 
by the inducements that country offered to enterprise and 
the advantages it afforded for money -making. There his ability 
as a shrewd speculator and sharp financier manifested itself, 
and after a sojourn of about twelve years he returned to 
Philadelphia with a capital of $40,000. Upon his arrival in 
Philadelj)hia he determined to start a piano manufactory, and 
with this object in view leased certain property for the pur- 
pose. This notion was immediately abandoned, and he pur- 
chased a large invoice of pianos and returned with them to 
Buenos Ayres. 


"We next find laim at Valparaiso, Chili, engaged in piano 
making. He remained there for some time, and then em- 
barked for Peru, where he was constantly engaged in the same 
business for ten or eleven years. While there, just jn-evious to 
a contemplated visit to California, his workmen deserted him 
and went to Mexico. This left him in quite a dilemma, as he 
had a number of contracts for pianos yet unfilled, when his 
workmen went away, and it was impossible for him to obtain 
other experienced mechanics. He, however, determined not to 
throw up the contracts, and instead of making the journey he 
had anticipated, apj^lied himself to the task of finishing the in- 
struments. This cost him two years of hard labor. 


In 1847 Mr. Lick arrived in San Francisco, He brought 
with him $30,000. He looked about him for some profitable 
investment. His former experience in new localities served 
him well here. In prospect, he saw San Francisco Bay float- 
ing a vast commercial fleet. The bare and desolate sand-hills 
of the peninsula his imagination covered with beautiful dwell- 
ings and well-kept streets. The water-front he pictured as 
noisy with the turmoil of trade. "With this lively view before 
him, he bought large tracts of suburban real estate, which 
could then be obtained for a nominal sum, and also invested 
largely in the most desirable business lots. A large lot at the 
corner of Montgomery and Jackson streets he purchased for 
$5000, and shortly afterward sold a part of it to Duncan, 
Sherman & Co. for $30,000. The yeav following his arrival in 
San Francisco (1848) the gold excitement broke out. While 
almost every one was off to the mines, Mr. Lick remained in the 
city purchasing real estate. All these transactions were per- 
formed quietly, and even after San Francisco had attained an 
enviable rank as a city, his intimate associates could not tell 
the extent of his purchases. During those bustling times 
there were in the city many of that class of land grabbers 
known as "squatters." With these Mr. Lick had considerable 
trouble. At one time he kept men employed at $20 p»r night, 
guarding his property from their encroachments. 


San Jose, by reason of its location in the centre of a rich 
agricultural district, had been, previous to this time, a town of 


more imiDOrtance than San Francisco. Mr. Lick turned tliither. 
He purchased a favorable mill site and proceeded to erect a 
large flouring mill. Persons who were oracles of wisdom, 
laughed at his project. He, however, kept his own counsel 
and toiled on at his structure. The principal part of the wood- 
work was built of mahogany. The whole edifice was a perfect 
model of mechanical skill and workmanship. It was made on 
the most substantial plan. The cost when complete amounted 
to $200,000. The finish and ornamental work was not surpassed 
in the palatial drawing-room. Some one facetiously spoke of 
it as Lick's folly, and this title was passed from mouth to 
mouth until it became its historical sobriquet. Notwithstand- 
ing the jests and witticisms this mill provoked, it did turn out 
iirst-class flour, and commanded the respect of every good 
housewife whose pride was to set before her guests whiter and 
lighter biscuits than her aspiring neighbor. 

It has been said that Mr. Lick had private reasons for build- 
ing the structure in so expensive a style. Rumor intimated 
that at a very remote period in his life, when he was but a boy, 
and almost penniless, he was in the employ of a rich miller 
who had an accomplished and beautiful daughter. Mr. Lick, 
it is said, became infatuated with her and aspired to her hand, 
and went so far as to hint to the old gentleman the state of his 
feelings and the height of his ambition. The old miller treated 
his overtures jestingly and taunted the young aspirant of his 
poverty. This was a severe wound to his sensitive nature, and 
he vowed openly that the time woxild come when lie would 
build a mill of his own that would so much sur^Dass that of the 
old gentleman, as to bar all comj^arison. 

Whether this be but an idle rumor, or has a shade of truth 
about it, it certainly shows the disposition of the man — to do 
anything he undertook. Perseverance and great industry have 
been his leading traits. He tenaciously clung to any plausible 
undertaking until he accomplished his object. 

The Lick House, on Montgomery street, which has for so 
long commanded the patronage of the fashionable and wealthy 
public, was built by him. The princij^al feature of attraction 
in this building is its magnificent dining-hall. 

Mr. Lick is very unostentatious in his demeanor. He usually 
occupies a plain suite of rooms in the Lick House. He rather 
shuns society, and rarely takes part in, or even attends any 


public reception, banquet, or select social gathering. He is 
retiring in disposition, and has simple habits. There are no 
modern luxuries in his living. All he seeks is modest comfort. 
He is dignified and gentlemanly in manner, and in conversation 
is concise and brief. He is thoughtful, sometimes unto moodi- 
ness; he jDerfects his plans without consulting any one, and gives 
personal attention to their execution. He is now in his eightieth 
year. His grandfather enjoyed unusual longevity — having 
lived to the ripe age of 104 years — from whom Mr. Lick no 
doubt inherits his strong constitution. For the past few 3'ears, 
however, he has been in bad health, and is confined closely to 
his room. 


Mr. Lick was so successful in business that he amassed a 
large fortune. Feeling that in the natural course of events 
but few years of life at most would be spared to him, he wisely 
chose to attend to the desired distribution of his property per- 
sonally, not leaving its adjustment to be quibbled over in the 

By a trust deed dated July IG, 1874, in which five of the 
most prominent citizens were appointed trustees, he bequeathed 
property, the aggregate value of which exceeded five million 
dollars, to various public institutions of art, science and be- 

The full control of the property — its disposal and the dis- 
tribution of the money realized from it — was vested in the 
trustees. Some large sales had been made by them, and every- 
thing seemed to be goiug forward in perfect compliance to the 
letter of the deed, when the following communication was 
placed in the hands of the trustees : 

San Fbancmoo, March 24, 1875. 
Messes. Thos. H. Selbt, D. O. Mills, Hknry M. Newhall, William 
Alvoed, Geo. H. Howard, James Otis and John O. Eabl. 
Gentlemen: When I executed the instrument in which you are named 
as my trustees, I supposed I had a very short time to live, and that if my 
intentions of founding an observatory and other public institutions were 
ever to be carried out, it would be through you. I was therefore induced, 
hastily and without due and proper consideration, to execute the instru- 
ment referred to. It is still my intention, and ever will be, to carry out 
the general purposes therein expressed, but I now find upon a cool and 
careful study of the provisions of that instrument which my improved 
health has enabled me to make, that there are many and serious mistakes 
and errors of detail in it which ought to be corrected. One of the most 


serious of these is, that by the terms of said instrument, the execution of 
the great works which I have contemplated, is virtually postponed until 
after my death — a result that I certainly never intended. Another serious 
objection is that some of the beneficiaries (whose claims upon me I per- 
haps did not sufficiently consider) have declined to accept its terms, and 
this fact, as I am advised, will indefinitely delay, if not entirely prevent, 
the carrying out of the plans, for the execution of which you were ap- 
pointed my trustees and agents. 

Under the circumstances, and as I desire while I still live to see the 
works contemplated at least started, and as I am advised and am entirely 
satisfied that the instrument referred to does not and cannot accomplish 
the purposes desired by the public, as well as myself, I respectfully ask 
you, and each of you, to resign or to revest in me the subject of the trust, 
so that by the execution of other papers better calculated to carry out my 
plans, the works contemplated from the beginning may at once be com- 
menced and carried on to completion without delay. 

I request you not to sell any more of the proi:)erty included in my deed 
of trust, and I beg of you the favor to answer this communication imme- 

I remain, with great respect, etc., 

James Lick. 

The letter explains itself. Three days later, a complete 
revocation of the trust deed was filed with the Recorder. 

This action elicited much unfavorable comment from the 
public and the press, yet Mr. Lick's determination was not 

On the 21st of September, 1875, another trust deed was exe- 
cuted, in which Richard S. Floyd, Faxon D. Atherton, Sr., 
Bernard D. Murphy, John H. Lick and John Nightingale were 
appointed trustees. It bequeathed as follows : 

To the Regents of the University of California $700,000 is 
bequeathed for the erection and maintenance of a " more 
powerful telescope than has ever been constructed," with a 
suitable observatory and buildings, to be called the "Lick 
Astronomical Department of the University of California." 

For the founding of a school of mechanical art for educating 
males and females in the practical arts of life, such as work in 
wood, iron, stone, and all the metals, to be named the " Cali- 
fornia School of Mechanical Arts," and located at San Fran- 
cisco, $540,000 is donated. 

For the erection and maintaining of free public baths in San 
Francisco, $150,000 is given. 

For the erection of a bronze monument to the memory of 
Francis Scott Key, author of the song "Star Spangled Ban- 
ner," $60,000 is bequeathed. 


For a group of bronze statuary representing, by appropriate 
designs, the history of California, and to be placed at the New 
•Cj-tj Hall in San Francisco, $100,000 is set aside. 

For the erection of an Orphan Asylum in or near the city of 
San Jose, California, to be free to all, of whatever nationality, 
sect or creed, $25,000 is apportioned. 

There is bequeathed to the Protestant Orphan Asylum, San 
Trancisco, $2500 ; to the Mechanics' Institute, San Francisco, 
$10,000 ; to the Society for Prevention of Crtielty to Animals, 
110,000; to found au institution called the "Old Ladies' Home," 
:|100,000; and to the "Ladies' Protection and Belief Society," 
San Francisco, $25,000. 

To the California xicademy of Sciences and to the Society of 
California Pioneers he bequeathed the remainder of his valu- 
iible property. 

After all the bequests are made, except that to the Academy 
of Sciences and Society of Pioneers, he reserves to himself for 
the term of his natural life the use and exclusive management 
of his homestead property at San Jose, but at his decease this 
also goes to the California Academ}^ of Sciences and the Soci- 
ety of California Pioneers. After discharging the trusts and 
making the payments mentioned, the residue of the proceeds 
of all the property is given in equal proportions to the Califor- 
nia Academy of Sciences and the Society of California Pio- 
neers, to be expended by them respectively in the erection of 
buildings, and after that in the purchase of a librar}'', natural 
specimens, chemical and philosophical apparatus, rare and cu- 
rious things useful in the advancement of science, and gener- 
ally in carrying out the purposes of the societies. 

Before the deed was made Mr. Lick had already given to 
these societies each a lot 80x275 feet on Market and Fourth 
streets. The lot of the Academy fronts 80 feet on Market 
street and that of the Pioneers 80 feet on Fourth street, the 
rear ends of the lots meeting, and leaving the corner between 
for other purposes. It is Mr. Lick's intention that the build- 
ings of the societies be erected on these lots. It is estimated 
that the lot belonging to the Academy is worth from $200,000 
to $250,000. It is also sujDposed that the residue of the prop- 
erty which is bequeathed to these societies will amount to from 
one million to a million and a half dollars to each. "With this 
jnagnificcnt endowment the California Academy of Sciences 


-will have the best financial condition of any scientific society 
in the United States. Even supposing that they never receive 
any more than the lot already donated, which they hold in fee 
simple, the Society is in excellent financial condition. 

His son, John Henry Lick — whose name apjpears as one of 
the trustees — receives as his jDortion $150,000, and $20,000 is 
set apart for the erection of granite monuments to four of his 
near relations. 

The name of James Lick will ever be revered by Califor- 
jiianSj and his memory will not fade. 






TO those whose habitations are remote from the sea; upon 
"whose ears the roar of ocean never harshly breaks; whose 
eyes seldom or never behold the mighty deep wrought up to 
furious wrath; to those who dwell amid inland quietude, where 
Nature is seen only in her more lovely aspects, 

"A life on the ocean wave, 
A home on the rolling deep," 

is surrounded by a halo of romance, the contemplation of 
which is exhilarating and inspiriting. Even the horrible details 
of shipwrecks fail to impress them with the perils to which 
those are exposed "who go down to the sea in shijDS." 

There is no class of fiction devoured by youthful readers 
with greater gusto than " Tales of the Sea," or " Sketches from 
Xiog-books of Old Tars." Imaginary heroes of*" haunted ves- 
sels" are topics of eager talks among ambitious urchins, who, in 
their dreams, float over silver seas, "brave sailor boys" upon 
some phantom ship. 

But to the sailor who has been ordered aloft, and is desper- 
atel}' clinging to the swaying yards as the ship reels before the 
furious gale, putting his feeble eflforts against the maddened 
elements, there is a terrible realization of the dangers that beset 
him; though his heart be steeled against fear, and his arm 
strengthened by manly courage, he feels and knows that he is 
at the mercy of the pitiless storm. 

A life at sea may have charms for some; but for those who 
are but sailors, there is little attraction. It is exile; often 
slavery. The ship may be rotten; the officers may be brutal; 
an epidemic may rage, and death become a fellow-mate; there 
is no escape. 

Above, the heavens may become overcast and frown with 

''JACK." 99 

muttered threatenings; beneath, the angry waters may lash 
and seethe — a vortex here, a moving mountain there; but there 
is no escape. Within the narrow confines of the ship he must 
remain, to meet storm, famine, pestilence, disease and death. 
Birds of ill omen flit above him, uttering weird screams in 
mockery to his slavery; monsters of the deep chase him amid 
sunshine and storm; they come and go at will; they are free. 

Shut out from all mankind, encompassed by danger, all is 
monotony. The lashing of the water is heard, unceasingly; 
the beating of sails, the creaking of masts, or the regailar stroke 
of the engine is forever in his ears. The mind becomes dwarfed 
for lack of diversion. The same unchanging scenes are around, 
the same monotone of sounds are heard, until the intellect fails 
to comprehend that there is a great world of restless, active 
life beyond this glinting horizon. Hence the superstition that 
torments sailors. 


Dickens probably did more to expose the schemes by which 
the credulous sailor is entrapped when ashore, than any other 
single person. Although the general j)ublic was shocked at 
the character and extent of the abuses practiced upon unsus- 
pecting Jack, and were disposed to attribute the extreme cases 
to the very fertile imagination of the novelist, his sketches did 
much toward directing the attention of the projier authorities 
to the evil; since when there has not been such a catalogue of 
infamous practices to record. 

Yet Jack is everywhere and always so credulous that the 
temptation to take advantage of his credulity is so great that 
there ai'e found in every seaport of any importance, many 
who subsist ujDon the booty nefariously obtained from him. 

When a vessel from a foreign port is announced off the 
heads, there can be seen shooting out from the water-front 
numerous small boats bearing the boarding-house crimps, each 
endeavoring to be the first to board the vessel and get into the 
good graces of Jack. A lavish display of glittering chains 
and ornaments — for which Jack Tar has ever had a weakness 
— a clinking of coin and a " long pull" at a caj)acious bottle, 
are a few of the attractions that a sailor nearing port cannot 
withstand; and even though his intention has been to remain 
faithful to his ship, he not unfrequently yields, and slips 


stealthily over the side of the shi^) and is not seen again by 
his officer. 

Deep-water Jack, on shore, is as much out of his element as 
a bunko sharp would be following the plow. He is at the 
mercy of the land-shark. It is " hale fellow well met" until 
the earnings of his last voyage and the prospective advance 
coin of a future one are exhausted; then there is no room in 
any of the sailor boarding-houses along the water-front for 
muddled, crazed, besotted and penniless poor Jack, and he is 
unceremoniously shipped on the next outgoing vessel. 

Deep-water ocean vessels require able seamen for crews, and 
there is therefore a good demand for experienced sailors. 
When a captain is making up his crew for a voyage, he applies 
to the boarding-house master for a certain nnmber of men. 
The prevailing custom is to pay in advance to each of the crew 
a certain f»art of their prospective earnings — $60 generally 
being the amount. Herein is the secret of the friendly feel- 
ings that the boarding-house masters entertain for Jack. 
"When drunk (and on shore he is seldom sober) Jack is a genial, 
jovial, whole-souled fellow, intent on having a real jolly time 
— which he certainly deserves — mirthful even to boisterous- 
ness, taking infinite delight in ''spinning yarns." As to the 
manner in which his money goes, he has little or no thought, 
and therefore he is easy game for the smooth-tongued board- 
ing-house master. 

So, then, by the time the vessel upon which Jack has (many 
times unconsciously) signed a contract to ship upon is ready 
to sail, not only his pocket-money, but the advance due him at 
sailing, is gone, and under cover of darkness he is led down to 
the wharf, placed in a small boat, and before his stupefied 
brain realizes his position, may be out of sight of land — em- 
barked upon a long and hazardous voyage, without having 
made any provision for his personal comfort, and not even 
aware of his destination. 

Coasting Jack is more of a worldly-wise kind of a man than 
his deep-water fellow. He is usually of that vagabondizing 
class who, when they cannot get an easy job on shore, take to 
the sea. Hence he is not so easily entrapped, and perhaps 
oftener comes out a trick ahead at any sharp game that is 
indulged in, than the wary boarding-house master. He ia 
equally at home on land and water, and is therefore not de- 

"JACK." 101 

pendent upon any of the "friendly" shipping agents. He is 
not much sought after by the crimps, unless it be for the 
opportunity of avenging some "beat" that he has perpetrated 
upon them. 

When seaman are scarce the captains often pay a bonus to 
the shipping master for every man shipped. The shipping 
master in turn fees the boarding - house master to supply the 
men, and Jack, whose services have commanded the bonus, 
gets — not a cent. 

In the event of an excess of seamen the boarding-house mas- 
ters pay the caj^tain a bonus for the privilege of shipping men; 
then Jack is recognized as a party to the transaction, and must 
"put \\-p" the money required to obtain his position. 

That Jack is drugged, robbed, and kidnapped; violently 
abused in person, and not unfrequently sent on his last long 
voyage by being launched into the waters of the bay, when 
stupid, from drink, has been told over and over again ; that 
there is much truth in such statements, has been asserted and 
reasserted; that in San Francisco such misdeeds are frequently 
enacted, has been said; but it will ever continue very much the 
same, so long as the "Almighty dollar" is the most potent in- 
fluence in life, no matter what laws may be enacted ; by talk- 
ing and writing, the public may be so directed to it that it may 
be kept in certain limits, and perhaps checked to a degree 
which results would certainly repay the trouble. 


No matter what his avocation, or how depraved man may 
have become, there are always a feiv good souls who earnestly 
strive for his reformation. They would elevate him and restore 
him to a pure manhood, could their holy desires be gratified. 
But such philanthropy meets with so many checks ; there are 
so many opposing forces against which it must struggle, that 
the good that might be done is not manifest, and the good 
that is accomplished is scarcely revealed. 

San Francisco has a Mariner's Church located near to the 
water front, wherein the sailor of every nationality is invited 
to participate in religious worship. The services are conducted 
in different languages, by earnest and able clergymen, and are 
perhaps more largely attended by the sailors than such churches 
are in more populous cities. A Sabbath school held at the 


same place is also well attended. Prayer meetings are held 
almost every evening during the week, and temperance meet- 
ings, too, are frequently conducted there. 

The absence of the well-to-do up -town residents from all 
these meetings is marked, and there is no stronger indication 
than this of the lack of interest in the welfare of the sailor. 
It is a fact that the more favored persons in life are more care- 
less of the needs of the poor than those whose portion of this 
world's goods is meagre and scarcely adequate to their necessi- 
ties. No saying has been more certainly verified than that 
which says, "to them that hath shall be given, and fi'om them 
that hath not shall be taken away." 

The meetings conducted at the Mariner's Church are unsec- 
tarian. There is a wide field for fruitful labor in this congre- 
gation. Missionary work on the street, in the boarding-houses, 
and on shiiD-board, and the distribution of tracts, rehgious pa- 
pers and bibles among all this class, for whose benefit the 
church was established, constitute a large and responsible 

The Mariner's Church receives much support from the San 
Francisco Port Society, which was established in 1860 — its ob- 
jects being the moral improvement of the seamen and others 
connected with the sea in this port. 

The Ladies Seamen's Friend Society, organized in 1856, 
though not nearly so well supj)orted and efficient in its objects 
as it might be, is nevertheless what its name signifies, and is 
constantly though silently working for the good of the sailor. 
Its intentions are, to surround the sailor, while on shore, with 
proper influences, administer to his needs, and provide a Home 
wherein he will be protected from the impositions that other- 
wise beset him. 


"Who in this wide world is more deserving of sympathy than 
Jack? His is a life of toil, of privation, and of incessant peril. 
"We read with tearful eyes of the last agonizing wails of those 
passengers who went down with the ill-fated Pacific. 0, how 
heartrending was that scene where so many persons were sud- 
denly launched into the pitiless depths of ocean, to rise no 
more! Innocent childhood, blooming youth, the strength of 
manhood, and feeble, tottering age, all passengers on that 
doomed craft, met the same terrible fate, and theii- memory 

"JACK." 103 

has been watered by briny tears, even as their bodies are 
watered by the waves of ocean that roll above them. 

Where were the crew of the vessel when this fearful tragedy 
of death was enacted ? Were they not among the number that 
perished ? Are there not some hearts in those shabby dwell- 
ings down near the water's edge that were made to bleed when 
the fate of the vessel was announced? In that long list of 
horrors it was simply said that "the crew also were lost." 

Why do we look so tenderly into the eyes of a loved friend 
as he steps aboard a vessel bound for some foreign port ? Why 
do we press that hand so warmly, and cling to it so long as we 
take the parting grasp ? And as the vessel glides rapidly away, 
and nought is visible upon her deck but phantom-like outlines 
of human forms, in whose shadowy hands flutter handker- 
chiefs — the last parting signal — why do we, even after the 
vessel has disappeared, continue to gaze out upon the water ? 
We realize the dangers that overshadow them in the journey 
they have set out upon, and we fear that we shall " never see 
that face again." Such are the perils that forever threaten 
the life of poor Jack. Nay; they are even greater. How 
often does the cry escape through the teeth of the storm — • 
" Man overboard ! " "Who was it?" " A sailor from the rig- 
ging, sir!" 'Tis a simple story, and shortly told. His duty 
called him aloft ; he lost his Ijold, and was hurled far out into 
the water. 

It is said of the sailors that not more than one in ten have 
famiUes. This is certainly very fortunate; for what a life that 
wife must lead, whose husband is ever upon the sea. It is a 
life of watching and waiting, and many times she waits for- 
ever ! 

We should think more of Jack ; care more for him ; and, 
above all, do more for him — for he is invaluable, and to him, 
Tve are greatly indebted for the progress we enjoy. 


XI 11. 



SAN FEANCISCO rejDoses among- the hills. For this reason 
there is no one point from which a topographical view of 
the city can be taken that -will do it anything like justice. In 
the early days of this "upheaved city," its inhabitants, when 
they wanted to facilitate their communication with the outei' 
world — and enough is known of the character of the place at 
that period to warrant the belief that probably this desire never 
prevailed in a community more strongly than among the early 
San Franciscans — climbed the heights of the highest of these 
hills, in what is now the eastern border of the city, whence they 
could obtain a view of at least all the shipping hovering about 
the bay, and especially the new arrivals as they apjDroached the 
city through the Golden Gate. 

A station was erected there, frona which the approach of the 
vessels entering the harbor was announced to the anxious 
population below. Separate and easily understood signals were 
arranged by which the keeper of the station could communicate 
to the people the kind of craft, whether sidewheel steamer, 
in-opeller or sail ship, that was heading for the city. Thus 
were they apprised in advance, of the arrival of unexpected or 
long-looked for vessels, and sometimes for hours before "their 
ship had come in" and effected a landing, the eager populace 
stood Avaiting on the shore. 

Because of such use, this prominent point soon became known 
as "Telegraph Hill," and coming generations will probably 
tnow it only by that name. It is now climbed daily by scores 
of busy artisans who, with their families, occupy the houses 
that are perched along its southern side, extending almost to 
the summit. Visitors, who for the view it affords, or perchance 
to revive some cherished recollection that it alone can awaken > 


or those representing that large and influential class who, when 


" Should auld acquaintance be forgot, 
An' never brought to inin'," 

always answer no, often scale its tortuous paths, and lying 
prone upon its summit, indulge in reveries that recall its in- 
teresting associations that now linger only in memory. 

Such a visit to the top of Telegraph Hill shakes off the dust 
from memory's page, and affords the visitor a rare opj)ortu- 
nity for ventilating his warm sympathies with a community of 
people whose ways have been imperfectly understood. And 
the view of the Bay, Goat Island, Alcatraz and Mt. Tamalpais, 
far beyond, which it affords, is an ample compensation for the 
labor required in the ascent; but it is of little avail in forming 
a correct estimate of the topography of San Francisco. Mont- 
gomery Street, it is true, one of the finest and liveliest streets 
in the city, is open to the observer, from beginning to end; 
but the life is not clearly defined in the distance, and the sur- 
roundings are anything but picturesque . The business jiart of 
the city, with its massive and monotonous blocks, here and 
there relieved by a tower or steeple rising far above the sombre 
roofs — spreads out from the base of the hill far to the south, 
and to the water front on the east. Where now stand the prin- 
cipal business houses, a quarter of a century ago the waters of 
the bay were sparkling in the sunlight, and huge ships rode at 
anchor. Above this, ugly sandhills rose up to check the west- 
ward march of improvement ; but a progressive peoj)le have 
uttered the prayer of faith, and these hills (that were almost 
mountains) have been cast into the sea, the tide has receded, 
and where then spread the waste of water and towered the 
barren hills, are now the many temples of Commerce. 


In the opposite part of the city Lone Mountain rises, another 
prominent landmark. A tax on the imagination must be levied 
to make a mountain of this hill; and its loneliness is not ajDpa- 
rent, for it is surrounded on nearly every side by eminences,, 
some of which might be denominated mountains with much 
more propriety. In shape it is rather symmetrical, and its 
surface is covered with a profuse growth of wild flowers and 
native shrubs, exhibiting in its few bare spots good samples o£ 


California soil. Could a liberal supjDly of water be brought to 
the summit of Lone Mountain, the project of converting it into 
an ornamental park, and making it one of the most attractive 
jDoiuts of San I'rancisco, would be strictly practicable. All 
tliat is requisite is a complete system of terracing, liberal and 
judicious planting of trees, shrubs and flowers, and an abund- 
ance of good walks. 

Lone Mountain and much of the land about its base is owned 
by the Catholic Bishop of San Francisco. Its summit has long 
been very aj)propriately crowned with a large Catholic cross. 
Unfortunately this relic of early days, with its curiously carved 
niches and initials, was leveled with the ground during a recent 
gale. In its stead another, of larger dimensions, with a more 
substantial foundation, was jDromptly reared, and having re- 
ceived its comj)lement of white paint, now stands conspicu- 
ous as a monument of the worthy Bishop's religious zeal and 
executive ability. 

Standing in the shadow of this mammoth cross, to the west, 
lie the undulating sandhills, beyond which is seen the gleam- 
ing surface of the ocean ; while to the north the Golden Gate 
and an arm of the bay is in the view. Looking eastward, the 
aitj spreads out over a broad and uneven surface, and the 
smoke from the steamers and the topmasts of ships that lie at 
anchor in the harbor, rise in the gloomy distance. 

Here the observer sees but little of the life that is within this 
busy city, but there are no intervening hills to obstruct the 
view of the several "cities of the dead" dependent upon San 
Francisco for their supply of inhabitants. Lone Mountain 
Cemeteiy is conspicuous at the north ; the Masonic at the 
south ; the Catholic or Calvary at the east ; and the Odd Fel- 
lows at the northwest. 

These latter scenes are somewhat sombre in their suggestive- 
ness ; still, the sad reflections that they awaken are immedi- 
ately dispelled by casting a glance in the direction of Golden 
Gate Park, which lies to the south and west, toward the ocean, 
for there may be seen at almost any hour of the day one of the 
brightest and gayest phases of San Francisco life. Its magnifi- 
•cent drives are thronged with fine equipages, and upon the stiff 
breeze that comes in from the ocean is borne a sound of life 
and merriment — the joyous voices of the happy occupants of 
the swift-moviuG;- vehicles. 


Besides TelegrajDh Hill and Lone Mountain, there are numer- 
ous other j)rominent elevations in the city proper. Russian 
Hill in the northwest is notably jorominent, and affords a 
splendid view of the city, country, bay, and ocean through 
the Golden Gate. Clay Street Hill^ the highest in the city, 
being three hundred and seventy-six feet above the bay , is a 
near neighbor to Russian Hill, and its summit is likewise 
sought as a point of observation. This hill is crowded by 
residences, and is considered one of the most healthful locali- 
ties on the peninsula. Rincon Hill is a small elevation rising 
from the low lands in the southerly portion of the city, and in 
the earlier history of San Francisco was the most aristocratic 
residence locality. But when the "Second Street Cut" was 
projected, dividing the hill into two half cones, its beauty was 
endangered, and wealthy persons began to look in other direc- 
tions for building sites, and the completion of the excavation 
lias rendered it an undesirable place of abode. However, some 
of the finest and most homelike private houses of the city stand 
on Rincon Hill. Mission or Twin Peaks, the loftiest j)oints in 
the county, form a pictin-esque background in the southwest- 
erly suburbs, about three and one haK miles from the City 
Hall; and Bernal Heights, two miles beyond — recently a scene 
of wild excitement, because of the reported gold discoveries 
thereon — almost traverse the width of the peninsula, and shut 
off a further view. 







FEW cities have so great a proportion of wealthy inhabi- 
tants as San Fi'ancisco. Some of them have acquired 
fortunes by close application to business, long and constant 
effort, and a strict integrity. But these are few. Many of 
the wealthy men of San Francisco have, at a stride, stepped 
from a cottage into a mansion. The getting of much gold has 
been a chance game. The " pot" was full; they played and 
won. A sudden turn in stocks has often lifted men fi'om pov- 
erty to affluence. It is a game that all play at, and some must, 
of necessity, win. 

It is those who suddenly secure great wealth who compose 
the elite. Money gives the most vulgar, rank. Fashionable 
society opens its arms to the man who has gold, be he a knave 
or a fool. 

The greatest ambition of the elite is to be leaders of their 
clique; their sole motive, to keep well up in the fashionable 
world. The person is adorned, and the mind neglected. They 
study to be brilliant, vivacious and amiable, in the ball-room 
or at the banquet, but relapse into a peevish and fretful mood 
at home in the family circle. Their nights are spent in revel, 
their days are dull and mopish. Gaslight is more favorable 
to decaying beauty than sunshine. There is much social vice 
among the elite. Immorality is not unknown, and even virtue 
is tainted. Theirs is a life of excitement and dissipation. 


"When it was announced a month in adA-ance, that a daughter 
of one of the most fortunate California Street sj^eculators was 
to join in wedlock with a gentleman of acquirements as well 


as a fashionable star, all tlie ton was iu a hubbub of excite- 
ment, and gossij)ers had jjalatable food. It was the society 
talk, that the forthcoming event would be the most brilliant 
affair that had illumined San Francisco's upper world. There 
was every reason to suppose that nothing would be spared by 
the parties most interested to make it so, as the bank account 
to draw from, as well as the inclination to surpass anything of 
that nature that had hitherto set the gay world astii", was suffi- 
cient. There was not a Httle flitting to and fro among the 
"belles, and papas oftentimes were seen to run over the columns 
of their bank-books and contemplate the "balance" with a 
scowling countenance. Wardrobes were replenished, and toi- 
lette artistes were consulted and engaged. There was also much 
speculation as to who would be omitted when the invitations 
were sent out, and who would be the recipients of the special 
■" cards of honor." 

At length the evening came. ■ At eight o'clock gay equip- 
ages could be seen whirling rapidly in the direction of the 
mansion, bearing on their silken cushions the richly attired 
guests who had been invited to witness the ceremony. They 
were handed to the carpeted sidewalk by courteous gloved 
attendants, and were admitted and ushered to their rooms by 
servants in full dress. Within was a scene of rare splendor. 
Crystal fountains were playing; mysterious strains of music 
soft and sweet, echoed faintly in the arches. The air was per- 
fumed with the fragrance of the choicest flowers. Pyramids, 
-wreaths, arches and graceful festoons of delicate, trailing vines, 
studded with camelias, jessamines, tuberoses, mignonettes, 
carnations and white roses, added gorgeousness to the rich 
and costly upholstering. A brilliant, yet soft illumination was 
emitted from the sparkling chandeliers. Jewels, rare and bril- 
liant, decked the heads and throats of beautiful women. The 
ceremony was performed, and the hidden orchestra touched 
their harps anew, and the halls and chambers of the glowing 
mansion were filled with lively harmony. 

By this time, the numerous guests who had been invited to 
the reception, were pouring iu. The blushing bride and pale- 
faced groom stood 'neath a gorgeous floral arch, to receive the 
congratulations of the company. Refreshments had been dis- 
tributed at convenient intervals throughout the building, so 
that all could partake as they desired. Chinese lanterns illu- 


mined tbe grounds, porches and balconies. In the dance-hall 
a bower, nestled in a forest of evergreens, had been arranged 
for the musicians. Tropical plants, placed in rustic borders, 
shadowed b}' waving palms and graceful ferns, with here and 
there a spreading cedar, bordered the hall. Eare exotic shrubs 
of every description were met in graceful groups at every turn. 
The orchestra was composed of the most skillful artists, and 
numbered more than twenty-five pieces. 

At ten o'clock the banquet began, and from that hour until 
the early crowing of the cock, a scene of revelry, and mirth, 
and splendor, such as the ordinary j^erson would not witness 
during a lifetime, was enacted. Such is the wedding cere- 
mony among the elite. 


Death is no respecter of persons. His reaper is industrious, 
mowing every field in its season. In the bog-land, and on the 
highland the sound of his sickle is constantly heard. Though 
there be luxuriant fields that wave their strengthening stalks 
in the bright sunshine of exuberant life, and nod and laugh 
in mockery, as his swift wheeled chariot rumbles past, a blight 
may at any moment come uj)on them, and so weaken and speed 
their decay that they, too, must be garnered. 

"Why do the bells toll so, as we write? 'Tis not the deep- 
toned fire-bells that fill the air with clangor! It is a solemn, 
note they strike — a dirge for some departed soul. 

A star in society has gone out, and these are the funeral 
bells. The friends of the departed are already gathering to 
witness the last rites. The corpse now lies in state in the 
drawing-room of yonder dwelling. The casket containing it 
is made of the costliest wood, and trimmed with solid silver. 
It is mounted on a gorgeous catafalque. The columns of the 
room are trimmed with smilax, and the coffin is profusely dec- 
orated with flowers. 

The house is thrown open to the public, and hundreds throng 
the halls and doorways, pass in and view the remains, and then 
retire. The most prominent members of the society circle iu 
which the deceased moved, are chosen as pall-bearers. The 
body is conveyed to the church. Here the floral decorations 
are even more elaborate than at the residence. Wreaths, 
crowns and crosses, of the costliest and rarest flowers are 


Leaped on the coffin until it is almost hidden from view. 
Every seat in the large edifice is full, and the aisles and vesti- 
bule are packed with curious persons who have come to wit- 
ness this brilliant funeral. The services are brief. An eulo- 
gistic address is delivered by the minister. • A requiem is sung* 
by the prominent professional singers. The grand procession 
forms, and slowly marches to the cemetery. There are per- 
haps a hundred private carriages and nearly as many public 
conveyances. The cemetery reached, the remains are deposited 
in a vault for future disposal, the cortege turns about, and 
when without the cemetery gates drive rapidly to their respect- 
ive homes. "That was a triumphant funeral," said one of the 
leading belles as she threw her cloak on tlie sofa and con- 
fronted the mirror to adjust a white rose at her bosom. 






THE Bank of California lias ever been distinctively a Cali- 
fornian institution. It was conceived by William C. 
Halston, for the purpose of utilizing, by association, the vast 
capital in the city that was lying idle and unproductive. 

In April, 1864, the first meeting was held, and an organiza- 
tion effected, and in the following July the association was 
permanently established and incorporated, with a paid uj) 
gold capital of two million dollars. The Board of Trustees 
was composed of Wm. C. Ralston, D. O. Mills, Louis McLane, 
J. B. Thomas, W. Norris, J. O. Earl, Thos. Bell, Hermann 
Michels, A. J. Pope, O. F. Giffen, and J. Whitney, jr. 

With this nucleus the Bank was continued until July, 1866, 
when it was decided to increase the capital stock to five million 
dollars. Previous to this, however, it had j^aid one or two 
dividends, and besides had accumulated one million dollars in 
undivided earnings. The books were oj^ened to the public for 
subscriptions, and the balance of the increased capital was 
raised. From this time to January 1st, 1875, it paid a regailar 
monthly dividend of one per cent. , when these were discontin- 
ued, and in lieu of which a semi-annual di\adend of six per 
cent, was declared and paid on the 1st of July, 1875. But 
a little more than a month later it was forced to temporarily 
susj)end business, its doors were closed to the public, from 
which cause a financial panic ensued. 


Up to this time the Bank of California had enjoyed remark- 
able prosperity. Few institutions in the world have so rapidly 
risen to such influence and importance, and nothing had done 
so much for the State of California, by inspiring the world 


"with confidence in her proclaimed greatness. It had built up 
a reputation for itself, and representing not onl}' the name, 
but the resources of California, had also materially aided in 
raising her into the first ranks of the sisterhood of States. Its 
letters of credit were available all over the world, and it had 
established correspondents and connections in all the princij)al 
cities of the United States, Europe, India, China, Japan and 

The Bank of California, at its founding, at once became iden- 
tified with the development of California. Its managers and 
supporters were men who had faith in the future greatness of 
the State. They were mostly men possessing large individual 
capital that had been accumulated here, and, let it be said to 
their credit, they followed the example of the projector of the 
Bank, who, when urged to transfer his interests to an eastern 
city, said: "I have made my money here, and it is but just 
to the countr}' that I should use it here to build up a business 
that will not only benefit myself but the whole State." 

The influence and capital of the Bank were directed to the 
develojDment of the resources of the State. Mining received 
an impetus from it that soon made it a self-sustaining and 
profitable industry; and agriculture, that was yet an experi- 
mental project, was developed into the chief resource of the 
State by its friendly support. Manufacturing in all its branches, 
by the encouragement it offered, sprung into a flourishing ac- 
tivity, and commerce, although prematurely great, was strength- 
ened in its sinews by its upholding touch . It was the guardian 
of the infant industries on the coast, sustaining them until 
they had grown strong enough to stand alone. 

It is not strange that while thus extending aid on every 
hand, some unworthy and unsafe enterprises should slip in and 
share of the bounty. In a number of instances, heavy loss 
resulted from this cause. Injudicious loans were made and 
unprofitable investments. When New Montgomery Street was 
opened, two million dollars of the Bank's cajDital were locked 
up in the project. By the Kimball Manufacturing Company 
and the Woolen Mills, a million and a half was rendered un- 
productive and not available. May it not be, however, that 
while the Bank suffered these losses, and others of a similar 
nature, the city and country has been reimbursed, and many 
laborers have been furnished with employment that otherwise 


■would not have been, by the existence of these enterprises 
among us? Thus may we look for good results even in dis- 


When, on August 26th, 1875, the Bank of California sus- 
pended payment, the excitement of the San Francisco populace 
knew no bounds. Vague rumors were heard on every side of 
the rottenness of this, and the instability of that bank, and 
murmurings of fraud and treachery floated upon every breath. 
Other banking-houses were forced to close their doors — some 
only to hold in check the excited multitude and stay the ebbing 
confidence — others because of inability to meet the demands 
upon them. The very air seemed to inspire the feeling of 
panic. Not since the reign of the Vigilance Committee in '56, 
had there been such a spirit of uncontrolled and wild excite- 
ment manifest. A sort of volcanic sentiment, pent up and 
ready at the slightest rupture, to burst forth in devastating 
violence, seemed to pervade the masses. The tragic death of 
Mr. Ralston, the president of the bank, only intensified this 
feeling, and caused the cool and reasoning lookers-on to tremble 
for the financial safety of the city. 

The causes that led to the disaster are not yet fully explained- 
Some assigned as a reason, that the capital of the bank had 
been withdrawn for speculative purposes, to such an extent 
that it could not meet the ordinary demands upon it. But the 
most reasonable explanation of its susj)ension, and that most 
generally accepted as true, was the scarcity of available money 
in the city, caused by the heavy drain from the Atlantic States, 
and the amount circulated through the country to move the 

Men well posted as to the condition of the finances of the 
coast assert that during the twelve months preceding the sus- 
jDension of the Bank of California, thirty million dollars had 
been shipped to the East and that three millions were at that 
time locked up in the crops. So great a reduction of available 
funds would naturally depress the money market, and by the 
great demand thus created, cause depositors in banks to draw 
upon their accounts for operating capital. 

There are few banks that can stand a continued " run" upon 
them. There would be little inducement to engage in the bank- 
ing business if it were required of each bank to keep lying idle all 


the money deposited with it. In conducting a healthy banking- 
business, there is always a large surplus in reserve above the 
amount required for the ordinary daily transactions, the excess 
over this being used as operating capital by the institution. 
So when anything transpires to cause an extraordinary and 
sudden withdrawal of dejDOsits, because of not having time 
allowed to call in loans and convert various securities into 
available capital, the soundest banking-houses are sometimes 
forced to temporarily susj^end. 

The suspension of the Bank of California tested the recupera- 
tive vitality of the financial heart of the city; it gave the oppor- 
tunity to show how much stamina this " mushroom metrop- 
olis " possessed. In this, it was a blessing to San Francisco, 
for she showed herself master of the situation. 

There were many who had grave doubts as to the bank ever 
resuming business, and during the heat of the excitement 
rumors of its utter rottenness were heard and eagerly reported 
by gossiping croakers. But in less than six weeks, confidence 
was restored to the public mind, the wealthy stockholders had 
subscribed to a guarantee fund of seven and a half million dol- 
lars; and the doors of the Bank of California had been opened 
amid the din of cannon and the shouts of the multitude. 

On the opening day, it was anticipated that there would be a 
heavj' drain on its vaults, but when the balance was struck at 
the close of the day it was found that the deposits exceeded 
the amount withdrawn by thousands of dollars. This was an 
unlooked-for exjDression of confidence, and was a most encour- 
aging discovery to the managers. 

The time that has elapsed since the reopening day has only 
strengthened the faith in the stability of the institution and 
there is now, no reason why the Bank of California shall not 
in the future maintain the financial reputation that it had ac- 
quired previous to its embarassment; its influence meanwhile 
widening throughout the world and its sustaining power being 
exercised in the further development of the resoTU'ces of the 
State whence it takes its name. 







"YT'T'HEN the circumstances that led to the rapid building 
VV of San Francisco, and in fact the settlement of the 
whole State, are considered, the natural conclusion would fol- 
low, that the majority of her citizens were distinctively wed to 
business; that money-making was their sole object to the exclu- 
sion of more refined ambition. This was true to a very great 
extent among the earlier gold-hunters, but each succeeding 
tide of immigration has brought with it those whose ambition 
led them into intellectual pursuits, and the result is, that in a 
race of a quarter of a centuiy refined culture — art, science and 
literature, has kept well up with the more brusk and dashing 
business acquirements. The one has upheld the other, and 
the benefits accruing are mutual. Polite literature, scientific 
research and the mellowing influence of art, are not lost sight 
of by the San Francisco public. They are supported and cher- 
ished by willing hands — not by the select few, but by the 


San Francisco has reason to be proud of her public libraries. 
Indeed, the Mercantile Library would be an honor to much 
older and more populous cities. It was organized on January 
24, 1853, Its beginning was modest, but it has grown to en- 
"viable proportions already. The Library building is a massive 
and imposing edifice, and its internal finish and arrangement 
are very complete. It is situated on the north side of Bush 
Street, between Montgomery and Sansome. The building is 
three stories high, with attic and basement. On the first floor 
is the library, reading-room, reference library, ladies' reading- 



room, parlor, and trustees and janitor's room. On the second 
floor are the chess and smoking-room, writing-room, museum 
and store-room for periodicals. The basement contains a 
spacious lecture-room and supper-room, with ladies' and gen- 
tlemen's dressing-rooms. 

This building was erected in 1868. Its value at that date, 
together Avith the ground upon which it stands, which is also 
the property of the Association, was estimated at two hundred 
and sixty thousand dollars. Since then, by reason of the vast 
improvement of the part of the city in which it is located, it 
has very much appreciated, so that its present value perhaps 
exceeds three hundred and fifty thousand dollars. 

In 1870, the method that has in recent years obtained much 
favor in other cities and states, for raising money for j)ublic 
use — that of holding gift concerts — was tried by the Mercan- 
tile Library Association, and resulted in great success. By 
the jorofits it jdelded, the Association was placed upon a stanch 
financial basis, and as it has always been exceedingly fortunate 
in choosing wise and judicious persons to manage its afl'airs, 
it is not unreasonable to expect it to not only grow more volu- 
minous, but also to extend its usefulness in the community 
that has so cheerfully sustained it. Its refining and civilizing 
influence cannot be spared, and it is therefore important that 
every citizen in San Francisco, especially the members who are 
constantly enjoying its intellectual benefits, should exert their 
individual influence for its continued prosperity. If the 
Library is accomplishing the objects to which the eloquent 
orator in his dedicatory address at the completion of the build- 
ing, consecrated it, it is not only worthy of, but imperatively 
demands, the suj)porting influence of every intelligent San 
Franciscan. He said, at closing: 

"And now I dedicate this Temple to the true Mercantile 
Spirit; to the spirit of true honesty, which, rejecting the letter 
of the written contract, looks to its spirit, which disdaining 
all deceit, all mean and petty advantages, takes the just for its 
rule and guide; to the spirit of true equality, which, strij)ping 
off from man all accidental circumstances, respects and rever- 
ences him according to his merit; to the spirit of enterprise, 
whose field is the earth, the air, the sea, the sky, and all that 
in them is; to the spirit of munificence, that never tires in lav- 
ishing its treasures on all good objects on the scientific expedi- 


tion, on the library, the university, tlie cause of religion, and 
on the soldier battling for the right; to the spirit of loyalty, 
that submits calmly and patiently to that great bond which 
holds society together — the law — which aims to reform, but 
never to resist or overthrow; to the spirit of patriotism, which 
follows with affection, pride and devotion, the daring mark of 
our country's flag; and to the spirit which worshij^s God." 

The library contains between forty and fifty thousand vol- 
umes, consisting of standard works on every department of 
science, art and literature. There are choice collections of 
French, Spanish, German and Italian literatui'e, together with 
bound volumes of all the standard periodical publications of 
Europe and America. The bibliograj^hy also is very complete. 
A light iron gallery extends across two sides of the room for 
the convenience of the Librarian. 

On the next floor above, the regular files of the newspapers, 
magazines, etc., are arranged on convenient tables and stands. 
In this reading-room there are one hundred and sixteen maga- 
zines, about twenty-five illustrated j)apers — some of \\\hich are 
foreign — over one hundred Atlantic and about one hundred 
and fifty Pacific Coast papers. There are also regular files of 
papers from the Sandwich Islands and the Cape of Good Hope. 
During the past year there were over eighty thousand volumes 
taken from the library, indicating that those who avail them- 
selves of its benefits are numerous. For the last six years the 
average yearly circulation has exceeded eighty thousand vol- 

An idea of the literary tastes of the members may be gained 
from the number of volumes taken out of the different classi- 
fied departments. During the year 1875, there were furnished to 
members the following: Romance, 55,175 volumes; Juvenile, 
4,078; Travels, 2,940; Biography, 2,366; Belles-Lettres, 1,077; 
Science, 3,468; History, 2,355; Poetry, 1,525; SiDanish, 81; 
French, 2,683; Collected Works, 1,327; German, 1,637; The- 
ology, 597; Periodicals, 175 — making a total of 80,084 volumes. 

The total membership of the Association, in January, 1870, 
was 2,135. Of these, 1,726 were subscribing, 318 life, and 91 
honorary members. 

Any one in^ood standing in the community' can become a 
member of the Mercantile Library. Two dollars for initiation 
and three dollars quarterly dues, jiaid in advance, entitles one 
to its full benefits. 



The Mechanics' Institute was organized March 29, 1855. 
The object of the organization was to establish a library and 
xeSding-room and collect a cabinet of minerals, etc., scientific 
apparatus, works of art, and for progress in mechanical science. 
The Institute has been very prosperous. ' It now has in its li- 
brary-rooms about thirty thousand volumes, among which are 
many valuable and rare scientific works; also on its tables are 
found numerous standard periodicals, magazines, newspapers 
and illustrated publications. It is the official repositoiy for 
the United States Patent OflSce Eeports and contains many 
volumes of Foreign Patent Reports. 

The library has recently received a magnificent donation 
from the English Government of a complete set of British 
Patent Office reports, the third set in the United States. A 
large room has been fitted up for their special reception. The 
books are most valuable for reference as they run back to the 
earliest date. All the necessary drawings accompany them. 

What has given to the Mechanics' Institute its greatest popu- 
larity are the Industrial Exhibitions that have been held fi'om 
time to time under its auspices. The public have taken much 
interest in these and they have always met with hearty en- 
couragement. The tenth exhibition of this Institution began 
on the 18th of August, 1875, and continued open to the public 
up to the 9th of the following October. As many as thirty 
thousand persons have visited the Pavilion, in which the fairs 
are held, in a single day. 

By the profits, accruing from these exhibitions the Institute 
has made many valuable accessions to its library and apparatus, 
and is in a most flourishing condition. Any one can become a 
member by the payment of one dollar initiation and one dollar 
and fifty cents quarterly. The Institute building is at No. 27 
Post street. 


At No. 325 Montgomery Street, the Odd Fellows' Society of 
San Francisco have a commodious and well appointed Library 
Toom, containing over twenty-five thousand volumes of the 
various departments of literature. In this library is a very 
extensive collection of works on the early history of the Pacific 
Coast. Their cabinet of mineral fossils, etc., is said to be the 


choicest in the State. No other secret society in the city has 
as fine a library, and the Order is justly proud of its success in 
this line. The Odd Fellow's library was organized on the BOth 
day of December, 1854. It is largely patronized by the raem- 
bers and friends of the Order. 


Almost every literary, art, or historical society in the city has 
its collection of books pertaining to its special objects. Some of 
these are quite extensive. The Society of California Pioneers, 
the Academy of Sciences, the Young Mens' Christian Asssocia- 
tion, the San Francisco Verein, together with numerous other 
literary, benevolent, or religious associations, all, have libra- 
ries more or less voluminous. 

There is a Military Library, that was incorporated in Januai-y ^ 
1873; its objects, to acquire, preser^^e and conduct a library, to 
consist of books, magazines and periodicals of a military char- 
acter. They have on their shelves some six hundred volumes,^ 
and about one hundred maps. 

The San Francisco Law Library, is an important accessory 
to the law student. It contains about fifteen thousand vol- 
umes of standard legal, biographical and miscellaneous works. 
Some of the hotels have collections of books and periodicals 
that are quite attractive to their studiously disjDOsed guests. 
There is no lack of choice reading matter in San Francisco, and 
we believe that this fact is attested by the intelligence of the 







THE first utterance of the divine command, " Eemember the 
Sabbath day to keep it holy," has reverberated in swelling 
echoes from the walls of centuries, and is caught up to-day by 
thousands of eloqvient tongues; the bells in the steeples, by 
their harmonic chimes, proclaim it to the world; yet, the chil- 
dren of men go their ways unheeding. Sunday in San Fran- 
cisco! "Well, what does that signify? A day of rest? Yes; to 
a few, A holy day ? To some. A day of sport, of mirth, of 
levity, jollity, riot and dissipation? Aye; to many. 

In the early morning of a Sunday, San Francisco presents 
a quiet and peaceful scene. The streets are almost deserted, 
and the clatter of the swift-rolling wheels of the milk-wagon, 
as it whirls over the glistening cobble-stone pave, echoes and 
resounds like a shot in the solitude of a forest. San Francisco 
slumbers late on Sunday mornings. Saturday-night dissipa- 
tions call for rest, and not until nine o'clock on Sunday morn- 
ings does overtaxed humanity revive to open out the shutters 
and let in the light of day. 

But by this time the first bells are sounding, calling the 
children to the Sabbath-schools. Doors begin to open, and 
gates turn on their hinges, and soon the little feet go pit-a-pat 
upon the sidewalks; and 

Some clad in the richest robes, 

And some in threadbare dresses; 
But Nature knows no rank or caste 

In lavishing her tresses. 

But few older persons mingle in this throng of little folk. 
Their breakfasts are not yet eaten, their toilets not performed;; 
they await the sounding of the second bell. The joy-notes of 


the Sunday-school children will have floated up through the 
archway of the gold-paved city, and the angels in the seventh 
heaven will have given echo to the strain, before their older 
Tbrothers and sisters have even tuned their sacred lyres. 


Down at the ferry-slips the throng of pleasure-seekers are 
hurrying on the boats. On the rolling waters of the Bay small 
excursion steamers puff and pant, and make the timid oc- 
cupants of white-winged yachts that drift along their course 
scream out with affright. Street-cars crowded with all classes 
of persons dressed in their best suits pass to and fro. Car- 
riages drawn by dashing teams hurry through the streets. The 
sidewalks are gaudy with the gayly-dressed pedestrians that 
press past each other. Some are on their way to church, 
while others are hastening to the various picnic and pleasure 
grounds across the Bay or in the suburbs. 

In the more fashionable churches the display of toilettes is 
bewildering. The costliest fabrics, the most delicate tints and 
shades, the artistic blending of colors, together with the flash- 
ing jewels that adorn the persons of the ladies, contrasted 
with the sombre garb of the gentlemen, make a scene of 
splendor, the attractions of which are sufficient to divert the 
attention from the most eloquent sermon. Operatic music in- 
termingled with sacred staves swells uj) from the choir of pro- 
fessional singers, and the deep-toned organ pipes forth its 
tremulous notes in harsh vibrations. And the preachers preach. 

The ' ' good old gospel sermons that were wont to thrill the 
souls of all the hearers in the earlier history of our country " 
are now but seldom uttered from the pulpit. In every age the 
heart of man has new desires. "Meeting-house exhortations" 
are superseded by modified and altogether delightful lectures. 
St. Paul is eulogized for his brilliant powers; the writings of 
St. John are chosen as the theme of discourse, because of the 
sentiment of love that pervades them; David, the psalmist, is 
praised for his poetic style and classic rhetoric; the Book of 
Eevelations furnishes favorite texts for speculative theorists. 
He whose eloquence enkindles and stimulates the morbid 
imagination of his congregation is the popular preacher of to- 
day. AVhat a contrast of sentiment in the birth and centen- 
aiial anniversary of the American Republic! 



Sunday is play-day to San Franciscans. But few work. 
Even the Jewish peoi^le, either for lack of patronage or 
because of a desire to join in the general frolic, do not as a 
rule keep oj^en shop. By noon, almost all Sunday-workers 
have quit their labors, donned their Sunday clothes, and are 
off to the scene of revelry. 

There are very few Sundays in a year that a steamboat ex- 
cursion or picnic cannot be enjoyed. The climate puts no 
check on out-door amusements. Hence there is scarce a Sun- 
day but what there is a festive gathering at some of the many 
recreation grounds near the city. 

Oakland and Alameda furnish j)ure air and country scenery, 
and therefore many pleasure grounds are there provided and 
kept open on Sundays. These are choice resorts to the work- 
ing classes, and persons of moderate means, as the mode of 
travel is comfortable, quick, and cheap. Woodward's gar- 
dens, and the various Plazas, are also numerously visited by 
the same class. Golden Gate Park and tlie Cliff House are 
the attractions to the fashionable and wealthy. 

After the morning services in the churches are over, all lines 
of travel are crowded by the pleasure-seeking populace. Liv- 
ery establishments reap a rich harvest on Sundays. The most 
public thoroughfares and wel]-kej)t drives are teeming with 
life. Private carriages throng the highways and the suburbs 
that are so quiet during six days, on every seventh become 
the busiest and noisiest part of the city. 

Beer gardens become rivals of Babel. Not only the German 
population centre there on Sundays, but foreigners of differ- 
ent nationalities, and many Americans, join in the eating, 
drinking, and merry-making. Dancing, swinging, bowling, 
jumping, running and singing constitute a part of the amuse- 
ments. Sweet music is discoursed from rustic balconies. Sum- 
mer houses hid behind hedges of cypress and sheltered by the 
golden acacia and drooping willow, furnish quiet retreats for 
romantic lovers. A "free and easy" feeling pervades the 
whole throng, and nothing — not even the still small voice of 
conscience — is permitted to disturb the charm of hilarity. 


There are few Monday issues of the morning papers that do 
not employ their stereotyped heading "A chapter of Sunday 


horrors." Sunday night is a busy time for the policemen. 
The hoodlum element is in its glory. A day of riot prepares 
the vicious for a night of crime. Those who pass the after- 
noon at pleasure resorts out of curiosity, for the recreation it 
affords, or merely to see and be seen, have had enough of 
earth's follies for one day, and are glad when the thickening 
gloom of darkness warns them to their beds. But the rowdies 
and dissolute who bibble and carouse all day grow boisterous 
at twilight, and when nigbt has enveloped the city, are em- 
boldened and do not hestitate to commit the most fiendish 

The low dives are thronged with cut-throats and ruffians, 
and the frequent outbursts of profanity and ribaldry startle 
the quiet passers-by. Dance cellars and concert saloons teem 
with inebriated life. Saloons, both high and low, are in full 
blast. Corner groceries — those nurseries of vice and intem- 
perance that abound so numerously throughout the city — are 
filled with boys and men who gather there to jest, and smoke 
and drink. 

The tide runs high on Barbary Coast, and the filth and slum 
of society floats upon the surface. The lowest dens of in- 
famy are brilliantly lighted up, and in the doors and by the 
windows the most debased of fallen women stand gaudily 
attired and beck and nod to viler men that promenade the 
walks in front. The gilded palaces of sin charm the listener 
by harmonious strains of music. The "hot-houses" of hell 
receive more propagating warmth on Sunday night than during 
all the week beside. 

All the theatres and play-houses are open — the lower class 
putting on the boards the most obscure and sensational plays. 
The better and first-class houses are mostly devoted to German 
plays. The attendance is unusually good. Many persons 
visit the theatres on Sunday nights who never attend on other 
evenings. Dancing academies are filled with merry assem- 
blages, and every variety of amusement meets with encour- 
aging patronage on Sunday night. Churches that were 
thronged at the morning service are almost deserted at night; 
but lecture rooms, where expounders of modern and "pro- 
gressive" religious ideas spout their well-learned homilies, 
are filled with curious listeners. 

In the midst of this revelry and riot; this mockeiy and dis- 


sijDation; in this same Sau Francisco that has so little old 
time reverence for the Sabbath, there are some who do not 
forget that their ancestors called this day the Lord's, and are 
strict in the observance of the command to keep it holy. 
They are devout in their religious service, and although com- 
posing but a small minority, do not hesitate to take uj) the 
cross and follow their chosen Leader, always endeavoring by 
^vord and precept to lead others with them. 






BESIDES the regTilar United States soldiery, San Francisco 
has within her limits military organizations comprising" 
a numerical force of over two thousand five hundred men. This 
bod}^ consists of three regiments of infantry, one battalion of 
cavalry, and one light battery of artillery — all attached to the 
second brigade of the National Guard of California; also fif- 
teen independent military companies numbering about a thou- 
sand men. The force is made up of the citizen soldiery, and 
considering the civil duties devolving upon them, it is remark- 
able how skilled they have become in the difficult art of war. 
Many of the companies comport themselves at drill in a man- 
ner that betokens the veteran warriors. Although they come 
from the office, the store, the workbench and forge, and from 
every peaceful industrial 2:)ursuit, they are a hale band of men, 
ready at any time to shoulder their knapsacks and step from 
the luxury of domestic life into the tented field. 

California's loyalty to the Union, during the war of rebellion, 
was due more, perhaps, to the patriotism of her home soldiery 
than to the preponderance of a loyal sentiment among her citi- 
zens. The military in San Francisco has ever been loyal to 
their country's flag — and was, during the war, even radical in 
their devotion to the Federal Government. 


While there are other companies in the National Guard of 
California that are equal in military accomplishments to this. 
Company E, or "The Sumner Light Guard," is perhaps most 
widely known, because of having produced a rifle team that 
has particularly distinguished itself at several important con- 
tests in marksmanship. 


Fourteen young men, all members of the First Congrega- 
tional Church in San Francisco, took the first step in organiz- 
ing this company, by each signing the following preamble : 
" Believing that our duty to our God and our country is para- 
mount to every other duty, and that our country's safeguard 
consists in the ability of her citizens to defend themselves 
against the assaults of foreign and domestic foes, we, the un- 
dersigned, hereby form ourselves into a military corps." On 
August 10, 1861, they called a meeting in the vestry of the 
Church, at the corner of Dupont and California streets, and 
iuvited a number of their friends to attend. The meeting re- 
sulted in the election of a President and Secretary, and the 
appointment of committees to procure a suitable drill hall, and 
to make all the necessary' aiTangements for a permanent organ- 
ization. Turn Verein Hall, on Bush Street, near Powell, was 
secured and retained for a jDlace of meeting and drill, until 
the present Armory of the First Regiment was erected. The 
first drill officer was D. D. Neal, a gentleman of varied acquire- 
ments, who has since achieved quite a reputation as an artist 
in Germany. 

The comj)any was formally organized, according to the law 
of the State of California, on October 14, 1861, Col. John S. 
Ellis, commander of the First Infantiy Regiment, presiding at 
the election of officers. The commissioned officers elected 
were: Captain, Thomas B. Ludlum; First Lieutenant, Stephen 
Barker; Second Lieutenant, Rufus W. Thompson; and Brevet 
Second Lieutenant, Abram Moger. 

In July, 1864, Capt. Ludlum was elected to the office of 
Lieut-Colonel of the regiment, and was succeeded, as Captain, 
b5^ Abram Moger, who in turn was succeeded by Charles H. 
Daly, Oscar Woodhams, and Henrj^ J. Burns, the present Cap- 
taiu. Three of the " Sumners " commanders have held the 
position of Lieut-Colonel of their Regiment — Capt. Ludlum 
(who has also held the office of Colonel), Mogers and "Wood- 
hams — the latter yet acting in that office. 

The " Sumners " have always been reliable, and in any ex- 
citements where the presence of the military was deemed neces- 
sary to restore order, they have been a willing and chosen 
company, to such service. A few years ago, when the miners 
in Amador County "struck" for higher wages and grew so 
belligerent in demeanor as to intimidate all local authorities. 


this company, in connection with company C — the "Nation- 
als " — was detailed to go to the scene of disorder, and promptly 
responded to the order. Fortunately, the miUtary in San Fran- 
■cisco have not been introduced to the rigors and dangers of 
actual conflict on the battlefield, but there is no reason to sup- 
jDose but that, should the emergency reqviire, they would "fight 
as Kosciusko fought, and, if needs be, fall as Kosciusko fell." 


The Sumner Light Guard was the first military company on 
the Pacific Coast to introduce the Hythe system of scientific 
shooting into their drill j)ractice. In July, 1873, it was dis- 
covered that two members of the company, Messrs. James 
Gowrie and "W. B. Grant, were j)i'oficient in the new method 
of shooting; and, in August following, classes were formed to 
engage in this practice, under competent instructors. Shortly 
thereafter, target practice in the field was begun, and has since 
been kept uj), though at times under very adverse circum- 
stances. The Hythe system has recently been adojDted at Creed- 
moor, and is fast coming into general use all over the country. 
Under command of Captain Burns, the Sumners have given 
much attention to target shooting, and the popularity they have 
gained in their several contests has prompted most of the mili- 
tary organizations on the coast to emulation in the jjractice. 

In a match for the championship between States, the Sum- 
ners were victorious over Company D, 12th New York State 
National Guards and the "Emmet Guard" of Nevada — winning 
for California the championship over New York and Nevada. 
The comj)any recently made the highest score in short-range 
practice that has been recorded in the United States, and a^ 
the annual target j)ractice at Camp Schofield it has been \dc- 
torious in several brigade matches. 

The Sumner rifle team that has engaged in the jDiincipal 
contests, is composed of the following members of the com- 
pauy : 

H. J. BuKNS Captain. 

E. O . HcTNT , ^ Lieutenant. 

G. H. Strong Sergeant. 

Chas. Nash CorjDoral. 

David Watson Private. 

John Steed " 

j. roeeetson " 



Chas. B. Peeble Private. 

B. A. Sakle , . " 

w. f. mukeat " 

a. s. folgee , " 

Wm. Dove " 

Y. C.PosT 


If, in our future wars, when " foe meets foe in battle array" 
the "beads" are drawn upon each other as deliberately and 
accurately as in the target j)ractice of to-day — if their nerves 
do not grow unsteady at the thought of death, the havoc will 
have been so universal that few, if any, will be spared to shout 
the victory, or tell the tale of defeat. 


During the earlier years of the company's existence it was an 
exceedingly popular organization in society. Many of its 
members ranked high in the social scale, and frequent parties 
and entertainments were the offspring of their social disposi- 
tions. Nearly all the members were young, and buoyant of 
spirit, and nothing was more enjoyable to them than a mirthful 
" frolic." By the townsfolk, it was considered a mark of dis- 
tinction to receive an invitation to a ball or party conducted 
under the auspices of Company E, of the 1st Regiment. 

But of those who were young and light-hearted then, some 
have joined the army of the dead, others have dropped out of 
the ranks and have been lost sight of in the hubbub of the 
world, while those who yet remain have mostly taken upon 
themselves family cares, and are so held down by the jDressure 
of business that little time can be devoted to the comj)any, 
except as discipline demands. 

The name " Sumner," adopted by the company, is in honor 
of General Sumner, who was in command of the U. S. Military 
Division of the Pacific, at or near the time the Sumner Light 
Guard was organized. 







EVEKY city has its ahare of eccentric characters. There 
are always some persons who, either from a desire to be 
odd and peculiar, or because of a fancy resulting- from a dis- 
eased or unbalanced mind, adopt a manner of life entirely dif- 
ferent from any other of their fellows. 

The forms of this peculiarity are as varied as the persons 
assuming or bearing it are numerous. With few exceptions, 
however, they — like many of those who, by the ordinary stand- 
ard of human intelligence are adjudged to be sane — assume 
to be persons of much greater worth and importance than 
they really are, and entitled to greater consideration from 
their fellowmen than they receive. 

Perhaj)s the most original and best sustained character that 
is met on the streets of San Francisco is that of ' ' Emperor, ' ' 
adopted by Joshua Norton, an English Jew. To look upon 
him, knowing his early history in the city, one feels like ex- 
claiming with Ophelia, "how great a mind is here o'erthrown!" 
His is not merely a character assumed for effect or peculiarity, 
but results from a disordered mind — a mania or hallucination. 
Yet there is much of "method in his madness." 

His early life is shrouded in mystery. He was born in 
England, and from there went to the Cape of Good Hope, 
where he entered the military service as a member of the 
colonial riflemen. How long or how well he served in that 
capacity we are not informed. 

In 1847 or '48 he came to San Francisco, and is remem- 
bered by the early pioneers as having been a shrewd, safe and 
prosperous man; possessing more than ordinary intelligence, 
fertile of resource and enterprising. His business jjursuits 


were varied. At one time he was buying partner for three or 
four mercantile houses in the interior of the State, and in this 
capacity manifested great business ability. Then he engaged 
in the real estate business, in which he continued with appar- 
ent prosperity a number of years. While in this business he 
became possessor of much valuable real estate, and judging 
by the frequent occurrence of his name on the city and county 
records, and the monetary values represented, he was one of 
the largest land speculators in those early times. If the 
truth were known, it is very possible that he is to-day the 
legitimate owner of jDroperty, the present value of which if 
stated would greatly astonish the majority of citizens. A 
thorough examination of the records would reveal the fact 
that since he has been afflicted with a mental disorder, he has 
been induced to relinquish title to property for a mere nominal 
consideration, the value of Avhich was far up into the thou- 
sands. Since this centennial year has inaugurated an era of 
"investigations," it might be remunerative for some one who 
has a relish for removing patches, scraping off long accumu- 
lated whitewash, and rumaging among archives, to devote a 
little time to this matter. It would be interesting, if nothing 
more. AVhen his former partner disowns a knowledge of his 
history in California, and persons to whom he has transferred 
his interest to valuable real property, " know nothing of his 
real estate transactions," the interest in this question is nat- 
urally intensified. 

It appears that his business career culminated in a grand 
effort to get a "corner" on rice, which staple was, some ten 
or twelve years ago, a favorite article for speculation. He 
purchased all that was in the city and (as rumor has it) all 
that he could ascertain was in transit, paying large prices with 
a view of controlling the future market. Of Macondray & 
Co. he bought a large cargo, to arrive, agreeing to pay fifteen 
cents per pound (or thereabout). Other shipments, however, 
that he knew not of, were reported in the meantime, and upon 
the arrival of Macondray & Co's cargo the market was so 
"flat" that he could not meet his contract, and a protracted 
law suit followed, during which the mania that he was " Em- 
peror" first became manifest. It is said that he proposed to 
compromise the matter with Messrs. Macondray & Co. by 
marrying Mr. Macondray's daughter and investing her witli 
the royal title of Empress. 



His hallucination is, that lie is Emperor of California and 
Protector of Mexico. In accordance -witli this belief, his sole 
purpose in life is to properly administer to his subjects, and 
like a wise ruler should, do everything possible for the promo- 
tion of prosperity and the advancement of his dominions. His 
diplomatic relations with other countries are not lost sight of, 
and he profits by closely observing the progress or downfall of 
other nations, using their experience in his home policy. His 
power is duly recognized in times of international or civil wars. 
He claims to have reconciled the French and Pmssians, and 
brought about the peace that was established between them at 
the close of the late Franco-Prussian war. The war of the 
Rebellion was terminated through his interference, and the 
success attending the reconstruction of the Union, is due in 
a great part to his wise counsel. 

His own Empire is vigilantly watched. He is not only skilled 
in the arts of war, but his wisdom extends to the piu-suits of 
peace. The great resources of California are his pride, and 
to their proper development his greatest exertions are directed. 
How he gloats over the mineral wealth of his domain, and the 
agricultural value of his broad acres are a source for delight- 
ful contemplation! San Francisco, his favorite city, he calls 
the "Queen of the Pacific," and the world j^ays tribute to her. 
The municipal authorities receive his praise or condemnation 
as their administration pleases or offends him. By proclama- 
tion (sometimes to humor his whim published in the city press) 
he communicates to his subjects his ideas of progress and jus- 
tice, and never fails to attach his signature with the imperial 
seal, "Norton I. Emjjeror of California and Protector of Mex- 
ico Dei Gratia." Thus, from day to day, he busies himself 
with the afiairs of his Empire, the belief that he rules most 
royally being strengthened by the allegiance that all show. 
On his head his crown rests lightly. 


Emperor Norton may be known by his dress, as he pays no 
attention whatever to the varying fashions. His coat is navy 
blue, cut in the military style, and lavishly trimmed with brass 
buttons. On the shoulders are heavy ejoaulettes usually tar- 
nished from exposure to weather, though sometimes brilliantly 


polished. His liat, tlie regtilar Jehu style, is trimmed with 
some brass ornament, from which extends two or three waving 
cock-plumes. His boots are notorious for their size, and are 
less frequently polished than otherwise. 

During- the day he passes the time upon the streets, travel- 
ing from one part of the city to another, without apparent 
object, unless it be to see that the policemen are on duty, 
the sidewalks unobstructed, and the various city ordinances 
promptly enforced. He occasionally calls at the offices or 
business houses of acquaintances, stops for a few minutes, 
talking on general topics, and proceeds on his round — never 
calling at one place so often as to render his presence offensive, 
nor remaining so long as to be considered a bore. He is a 
good conversationalist, and having free access to all the libra- 
ries and reading-rooms, keeps well posted on current topics. 
He will talk readily upon any subject, and his opinions are 
usually very correct, except when relating to himself. He is 
more familiar with history than the ordinary citizen, and his 
scientific knowledge, though sometimes "mixed," is consider- 

Of evenings he may be found at the theatre or in the lecture 
room, a coo] observer and attentive listener. His face is a free 
ticket for him to all places of amusement and public gather- 
ings, and oftentimes he makes quite extended journeys by rail 
and other public conveyances without expending a dollar. 
Sacramento is a favorite resort during the sessions of the Leg- 
islature, whither he goes to see that legislators do not prosti- 
tute their privileges. He is on familiar terms with all officials, 
high or low, feeling of course that they are only his more 
favored subjects. He is perfectly harmless, and unless his 
mind be occupied with some more than ordinarily grave ques- 
tion relating to the Empire, is jocular, and disposed to be 

His living is veiy inexpensive. He occupies a cheap room, 
is temperate in his habits, boards at cheap restavirants, which, 
with many privileges granted him that others have to j)ay for, 
reduces his expenditures to a very small sum. When he wants 
money he will draw a check on any of the city banks, take it 
to an acquaintance who humors his delusion, and get it cashed, 
thinking, no doubt, that it is a legitimate business transaction. 
Some of the merchant Jews contribute to his support, and he 


is much better cared for than many who labor hard every day 
for a livelihood. Thus does his affliction secure him a com- 
fortable living, happy to-day, without care for the morrow, 
and free from all the annoyances that to many renders life a 
burdensome existence. 






THE jail building is a low two-story brick structure resting" 
on a stone basement. It is located on Broadway, just on 
the northerly border of what is known in common street par- 
lance as " Barbary Coast." The entrance is guarded by a huge 
iron gate. Passing up the stone steps and entering through 
this gate, the first floor is reached. This contains the jailer's 
o£&ce, store-room and kitchen, in front, while leading through 
the back portion of the building is a corridor, on either side 
of ,which is a row of cells, then a yard about fifteen feet 
square, beyond which is another row of cells. The size of the 
•cells is quite uniform, most of them being twelve feet long, 
£ve feet wide, and eight feet high. The walls are of brick, and 
the doors of heavy iron. A small grated window, opening 
outside, with a smaller wicket in the iron door, affords all the 
light and air that the criminal (or otherwise) occupant obtains. 
Three or four men are generally confined in these, and if the 
modern ideas of the benefits of light and ventilation are cor- 
Tect, it is possible that much discomfort and disease attends a 
long confinement in these cells. 

The second floor contains the matron's apartments and 
sleeping-rooms for the jailers. In the rear of this is a corridor 
and cells similar in arrangement to those below. On this 
floor, and somewhat removed from the others, are the cells for 
females. The only means of admitting light or air in these, is 
through a small opening in the door. 

A straw mattress answers the double purj)Ose of bed and 
seat — no chair, stool or bench being provided. This, with a 
tin pan, tin plate, tin cup, and pewter spoon, constitutes the 
furniture of a cell. A shelf or bracket — the i:)risoner's own 
make — usually adorns the wall, and upon this is arranged the 


"plate." Notwithstanding the inevitable periodical wbite- 
Wasliing, the prisoners continue (as has been their custom 
siace newspapers first became a public commodit}') to cover 
the walls of their cells with various illustrated papers; the 
Day's Doings and Police Gazelle are usually most sought after 
for this purpose. It would seem that these criminals revel in 
the thought of crime; and that they may not for a momeut in- 
dulge in a sober thought of life, they jilace these vice-reflect- 
ing periodicals about their cells so that they will be a constant 
reminder of the continued existence of vice and crime. May 
it not be possible, however, that a lack of other and better 
papers is the cause of their using these ? They are criminals. 
Their friends are vicious, if not criminal; and it is among the 
vicious and criminal classes that such immoral and corrupting 
periodicals circulate. Their friends furnish them these because 
they have them. If some of our philanthropic citizens whose 
souls are yearning for a subject in need of humane assistance 
would but look in upon the imprisoned criminals that crowd 
our jails and prisons, they would find abundant material upon 
which they could bestow their humanitarian labor. 

The county jail is usually crowded. It is the goal of the 
petit criminals. The hoodlum, the house burglar, the sneak- 
thief and the rioter are gathered into this fold. 

The prison bill of fare might seem to the poor laboring- 
class — who struggle along from day to day, and barely succeed 
in securing enough of the plainest food to keep soul and body 
in union — a great luxury. Printed, it would read: Coffee, 
mush, bread, beef, potatoes, molasses and soup. Tasted, the 
coffee might be cofiee, the soup might be soup, but following 
the rule that " the proof of the pudding is the eating," there 
would be little argument favoring the assertion that it was- 
really coffee and soup. The mush and the beef are certainly 
mush and heef; but mush and beef may be either good or bad, 
and the latter term is generally applicable to the quality that 
is served to the prisoners in the County Jail. 


The City Hall of San Francisco stands on the corner of 
Kearny and Washiugton Streets. The stranger might pass this, 
building a dozen times and not observe that it is devoted to 
any public use; unless perchance the unwholesome odor that 


emanates from the small barred windows 'neatli tlie side-walk 
should arrest his attention. It is a modest looking building- 
and withal somewhat weather-worn. 

Underneath the City Hall is a series of dark and gloomy cells,. 
over the main entrance to which is painted, in black letters,^ 
"City Prison." There are two divisions of cells, one part, 
called the old and the other the new, prison. The former com- 
prises two rows of cells, poorly ventilated, dark, and when 
overcrowded with jjrisoners — which is of frequent occurence — ■■ 
very foul. The new prison consists of some five or six cells,. 
constructed more in accordance with the rules of health as to 
ventilation, but poorly lighted, and in no respect a desirable 
place of occupancy. 

This is the probationary house of the criminals, where they 
await the decision of the Police Court, whose decree shall 
acquit them or give them a passport to the County Jail or San. 
Quentin. The Police Court, which is at once the clover-field 
of numerous pettifoggers and shysters, and the branding-yard 
of the law-breakers, is located on the floor above, within easy 
access of the prison. When the New City Hall is complete, 
the criminal classes of San Francisco may thank the honest 
tax-payers for more comfortable quarters wherein they may 
atone for their sins against the law. 


As long as a prisoner is under the direct charge of Judge- 
and Jury and the higher officials, he generally has justice meted, 
out to him; for the persons occupying such positions j:)erforra 
their work openly in the presence of a discriminating public. 
Of the under ofiicials, who gloat over their badges of authority 
with disgusting pride, the same can not be said. Their acts 
are hidden from the general public, and hence they have no- 
fear of the lash of criticism. 

A prison-keeper may be a brute, and the public be ignorant 
of the fact. His aids may be the worst criminals under sen- 
tence of imprisonment for crime — and there are often some suck 
in the County Jail and City Prison of San Francisco — and the 
joublic at large think they are serving out' a sentence in the 
ranks of the chain-gang. 

"When a prisoner is brought in, his name is entered on the 
prison register, and the offense with which he is charged is set 


opposite. If the caste of his crime and the cut of his clothes 
indicate that his rank is above the "vulgar," he will be treated 
courteously, and assigned the most comfortable berth. His 
talents are recognized, and are a convenient capital that com- 
mands respect. He is a smart villain, but a villain nevertheless. 
But should he be a poverty-stricken wretch, whom want, per- 
haps, had pressed to dire extremity, and whose looks and dress 
"betoken his condition, then is he the butt of blackguard ridi- 
cule and vulgar jests, and fully realizes the truth of the old 
saw, " it is hard to be poor. " The contents of his pockets are 
displayed for the amusement of those around, and he is hustled 
off to some obscure and foul den, and if au}^ compkint is made 
of ill treatment, is violently thrust into his cell, when the door 
slams behind him and he is at the mercy of the brutal turnke3\ 
Such instances have occurred in San Francisco's prisons (we 
hope not frequently), and they are not worse than many other 
23risons in the land. 

Were it only the guilty that suffered such abuses it would be 
a matter of less moment — but even such treatment of criminals 
is inhuman. It is a fact, however, that innocent persons ahke 
are forced to submit to such usage, and in almost every instance 
they have no recourse. Because a person is under the ban of 
suspicion, does not signify his guilt; and until his guilt is 
proven, the law assumes him to be innocent. Yet once in the 
City Prison, no matter how notorious a villain his prosecutor 
anay be, he is thrust into a cell among a mob of low and vulgar 
drunkards and criminals, and must await "the law's delay" 
and bear the "insolence of office." 

When prisoners are transferred from the City Prison to the 
County Jail, they are generally handcuffed in pairs and led 
through the public streets. The man who, when his trial is 
had, will be proven innocent, may be linked to the vilest 
criminal and forced to go out on the street, where he is sub- 
jected to the curious gaze of sidewalk loafers until he reaches 
the Jail. There is no distinction, if he be a prisoner, guilty 
or not guilty. 

Cii'cumstances lead to the arrest of many innocent persons. 
If the officials did their duties, they would not be forced to 
languish in the foul cells where they ofttimes contract diseases 
that injure them for life. It is not a difficult matter to get in 
jail; but to get out when once in a San Francisco prison, some 


strategy as well as considerable coin must be used. If the 
prisoner has no coin, he may as well sit down and patiently 
await his appointed time. If he have a friend who would bail 
him out, it will cost him $2.50 to send a message to that friend. 
Numerous small taxes of this kind are exacted, which during a 
month swell the perquisites of certain attaches to a considera- 
ble sum. 

If a prisoner has coin (sugar money), he may live luxuriantly 
as far as eating is concerned. The grocer who keeps across 
the corner will take his daily order and supj)ly him with any- 
thing he may desire, even his daily whiskey, for a good round 
price. The restaurateur is on the lookout for him, and stands 
ready to serve him with any delicacy in his line. Some 
" trusty " will, of course, get his commission on all this. There 
is little doubt but that the prison fare is frequently made un- 
palatable, for the sole purpose of increasing the demand for 
outside nicknacks. Influences are brought to bear on the 
vaiious departments of prison management that the outside 
public know nothing of, and until the public demand a change 
it will not only continue, but grow worse. Grand Jui'ies may 
make their monthly rounds of investigation, but their stereo- 
typed reports of " all things pertaining to the condition of the 
prisoners are satisfactory," will continue to be accepted until 
public sentiment demands a stricter investigation and a more 
detailed report. 

The intercourse jDermitted between the male and female pris- 
oners is a disgrace to San Francisco. The frequent recurrence 
of the same criminals, aiTested for the commission of the same 
kind of crime, indicates that there is something lacking in 
prison discipline. 







PEEVIOUS to the year 185G, the city and county of San 
Francisco existed under separate governments, and 
maintained separate officers; but, in July of that year, an act, 
passed by the previous Legislature, consolidating the two gov- 
ernments, took effect. The municij)al government has there- 
fore since that time been exercised over both city and county. 

The principal public officials for executing the laws are : the 
mayor; board of supervisors, of whom there are twelve, with, 
the mayor as jDresident; superintendent of common schools^ 
with twelve persons composing the board of education; the 
judges of the district, county, probate, municipal criminal, 
city criminal, police and justices' courts; the chief of police, 
sheriff, county clerk, recorder, auditor, treasurer, assessor, tax 
collector, and coroner. 

Until the consolidation was effected, the necessary outlay for 
conducting the dual system was enormous; besides, the laws 
were so lax as to admit of official peculation and various lavish 
expenditures, without any criminal liability being attached to 
such conduct. Previous to that time, also, the city had been 
at the mercy of thieves and criminals of all classes, because 
of the insufficiency of the constable or police force and their 
co-operating officials, whose duties were so ill-defined as to be 
constnied as was desired. When the lawless class would be- 
come so numerous and bold as to be considered intolerable, 
the citizens would temporarily assume the responsibility of 
administering justice, regardless of any existing laws, ordi- 
nances, and officials, hang a few of the most notorious despa- 
radoes, frighten the others into flight, and resume the "even 
tenor of their way," giving little or no attention to municipal 


affairs. But under the neAV code there has been more whole- 
some rule; its provisions and restrictions, with the additions 
and alterations that have from time to time been found neces- 
sary for its more j^erfect working — have proven well adapted 
to the proper management of the affairs of the city and 


Although there is more business ability, erudition and legal 
"wisdom requisite to judiciously perform the duties of the 
higher offices, those to whom the lives and pi'operty of the 
citizens are intrusted for safe keeping, occupy positions of 
more vital importance to the general public. The police force 
of a city should therefore have at its head men of undoubted 
integrity and honor, and every member composing the body 
should be first of all brave and intelligent, and have a keen 
desire to see justice administered to every creature; and also 
fully appreciate the rights and liberties of citizens, and the 
enormity of crime. But police departments are proverbially 
.cormpt; especially is this tiaie in the early history of thriving 
cities. So iinlimited is the authority with which they are in- 
vested, that, if they be so disposed, they can violate their 
trust and abuse their privileges to such an extent as to utterly 
disarm the law and bind the hands of justice. For this reason, 
every office connected with the management of the police 
department should be sacredly protected from political manip- 
ulation, and the whole police force should stand independent 
of any influence whatever that might be exerted by jDolitical 
chicanery. Merit, and the proper discharge of duty should 
be the only qualifications that would entitle a man to any posi- 
tion in the department, whether high or low. It is far better 
to have no police and no law at all, than to have the one in 
league with the lawless classes, and the other administered by 
corrupt politicians, whose only aim is personal profit and ag- 

At the fountain-head of the police department of San Fran- 
cisco there is apparently some impurity, but the officers of the 
force and the patrolmen as a body have not been, since the 
consolidation of city and county, excessively negligent, neither 
have they been as zealous in the performance of duty, as is 
frequently the case with such bodies. They seem to have 
chosen a mean course, avoiding extreme efficiencv as well as 


extreme neglect and carelessness. Either from the monotony 
of the life they lead, which it would seem, in a city with such 
a restless j)opulation as has this, would be interspersed with 
various exciting episodes, or from downright indifference, the 
San Francisco j)olice apjjear to dwell for the most part in a 
dreamy region, out of which the}- can be called only by a long" 
and loud cry of alarm. They seem to prefer to be driven by 
public sentiment, rather than lead and win public commenda- 
tion. Frequent reminders of duties not performed are neces- 
sary; but it is seldom required to curb their zeal. 

But when they once become aroused they are most formida- 
ble foes of disorder. A riot seldom develoj)s beyond its in- 
cipient stage; a hoodlum outrage is speedily avenged; gamb- 
ling-houses are sacked; vice is exposed and reproved; and 
criminals of all classes hunted down with a spirit and earnest- 
ness that proves beyond doubt that the material for a most 
efficient police force exists, and all that is lackiug is strict 
discipline. The organization is good, but the rules governiug 
it are not enforced. The executive officers seem to forget that 
by pursuing a conservative course there will be nearly as many 
votes cast against them by the good citizens at some future 
election as they will gain from the bad element of society. 

The system of employing " special " or " local " officers, as ■ 
practised to a very great extent in the city, while perhaps well 
adapted to the residence portion of the city, does not give satis- 
faction in the heart of Barbary Coast or in any part of the 
city, notorious for the lawlessness of its inhabitants. Only 
Tegular officers, paid by the city, should be assigned to duty 
there. If the officer is paid by criminals to watch over their 
interests, he can not be expected to inform against them or* 
arraign them for misdemeanor as readily as would one who was 
not in the least dependent upon them for his salary. The 
bribes and ' ' hush " money that are held out, are many times 
too tempting to the regular policemen, but if he be fitted for 
his position, he will not long be troubled with such ofi"ers, and 
will soon make crime and vice shrink from jniblic gaze. 

In the pamphlet of "General Kegulations" published by 
order of the Chief, for the benefit of members of the force, and 
of which every officer is presumed to carry with him a copy, in 
Section 47, under the head of Patrol Duty, occurs the following 
clause: " Officers whose beats cover houses of ill-fame, will be 


held responsible for the preseiTation of order and decency on 
the streets; women of the town must not display themselves at 
their doors or windows to invite custom, nor solicit custom on 
the streets." There is no pretension made, whatever (as any- 
one may see who will take the trouble to stroll along Dupont 
Street, Waverh^ Place, and any of the disreputable streets or 
lanes, after dark) to enforce any part of this clause, except that 
relating to the preservation of order. Decency is outraged 
hourly, both day and night, by prostitutes standing in their 
doors or lounging at their open windows, whistling or calling 
out to every man passing by. Dissolute fellows will stop on 
the public highway ^nd engage in vulgar and obscene conver- 
sation ■with them, and boys scarce in theii* teens may be seen, 
loitering along the walk, stopping occasionally to converse 
with them. And many of the officers on these beats are 
" specials." 


The numerical strength of the force, including the local or 
special officers, exceeds five hundred. Of these there are only 
one hundred and fifty regulars, appointed by the Police Com- 
missioners, and receiving pay from the city. The local officers 
or " specials" are appointed in the same manner as the regu- 
lars, and operate under similar regulations, but receive their 
pay from citizens residing on their beats. 

The higher officers are — Chief, Captain of the Detectives, Cap- 
tain of the Harbor Police, three Patrol Captains, and five Ser- 
geants. There are about one hundred and twenty regular 
Patrolmen and ten Detectives, the remaining number of the 
regular force being employed in various special and detailed 
capacities. They are a fine body of men, mostly above the 
medium stature, of solid build, and muscular. Their uniform 
is gray, with any kind of hat or cap preferred. The badge of 
office is a single silver star, with the officer's number engraved 
thereon, worn on the left breast, in plain view Avhile on duty. 
Each officer when on duty is required to carry a Police revolver, 
whistle and baton, but no weapon is displayed except in emer- 

In the detective seiwice, there are a Captain and nine assist- 
ants. These are all members of the regular Police force, but 
are generally engaged on detective business. The San Fran- 
cisco Detectives have been very successful in their line. I. W. 


Xiees, the Captain, has been on the force for over twenty-two 
j^ears, and has proven himself a very skillful and efficient officer. 
Henry H. Ellis, the present Chief of Police, is also an expe- 
rienced detective, displaying much tact and shrewdness in that 

In Eastern cities, the detectives are wonderfully successful in 
lecovering stolen money or property, but in most instances the 
robber or person guilty of the crime is permitted to go free. 
"The San Francisco detectives, however, seldom fail both to re- 
-cover the property and arrest the criminal. In this respect, 
■they are superior, for it cei-tainly shows their honesty of pur- 
■pose. While it is sometimes impossible to discover the real 
criminal and secure his conviction, an expex-t detective can, as 
a rule, accomplish this as well as recover the articles stolen; 
-and the frequent failures very naturally awaken the suspicion 
that he desires to make capital out of the thief, by leaving him 
iree to commit more crimes, and therefore give himself more 
.business, and a chance to gain other rewards. 

The Police Commissioners are — the Maj'Or, Chief of Police, 
County Judge, Judge of the City Criminal Court, and Police 
Judge. The salary of the Chief is four thousand dollars per 
jear; of the captains, one thousand eight hundred; and the 
j)atrolmen, fifteen hundred dollars. The climate being so uni- 
formly mild, there is not that injurious exposure to the 
members of the force that attends jDolice service in the 
Eastern States. 


The City Hall is the headquarters of the Police Department. 
The office of the Chief, the Police Court-rooms, and the City 
Prison, are there. The police telegraph lines, from different 
stations throughout the city, also centre there. In this vicinity 
there are always many rough-looking persons, both male and 
female, loitering. At the opening of the Police Court, they 
gather out of curiosity to see justice dealt out to their kind, or 
to testify against friends and foes, who have been so unfortunate 
as to be compelled to lodge for a night behind the City Prison 
bars. All nationalities are represented, both in the prison and 
among the spectators in the court-rooin. 

The greater number of the prisoners, as to nationalitj', is 
perhaps Chinese. Because of the public animosity toward 
them, and also because of their ignorance of the various city 


laws and ordinances that " Melican man " is pleased to put in 
force, there always apj^ears many such names as Ah Ki, Chung- 
Wang, Sing Song, and Wah Lee, upon the prison roll. The 
Chinamen are the pets of certain shyster lawyers, who precari- 
ously exist by looking sharply for the crumbs that fall from the 
mysterious pockets of the jn'ison-persecuted heathens. 

There are many amusing and many harrowing incidents 
almost daily occurring in the rooms of the Police Court. All 
manner of family difficulties, broils, street-fights, the strange 
freaks of drunken men and women, disreputable conduct, 
tricker)', villainy and petty crimes of all kinds, and committed 
Tinder all circumstances, are here ventilated. The position of 
Police Judge is certainly not very desirable, unless one is 
pleased to daily witness the meanest phases, and ugliest side, 
of humanity. 

A year's work of the San Francisco police force may be briefly 
summed up as follows: Total number of arrests, sixteen thou- 
sand eight hundred and twenty; value of lost or stolen property 
recovered and restored to owners, fifty-five thousand and sev- 
enty-four dollars; number of witnesses subpoenaed, seven thou- 
sand six hundred and twenty- five; nuisances abated, one thou- 
sand and fifty-two; and lost children restored, five hundred and 
nineteen. Of all the arrests, the largest number for a single 
crime was seven thousand two hundred and thirty-four, arrested 
for drunkenness. There were two thousand three hundred 
and forty-eight arrested for assault and battery; nine hundred 
and ninety -two for petit larceny, and six hundred and seventy- 
two for using bawdy, lewd, profane, provoking and obscene 
language. There were thirty-six arrests for murder, and one 
liundred and thirty-four for attempt to murder. Few persons 
g-uilty of the greater crimes have escaped arrest. 

Comment on this statement is unnecessary. It may not be 
improper to add, however, that from this showing it appears 
that San Francisco, with two hundred and fifty thousand 
inhabitants, is not an excessively lawless city; nor, with all their 
shortcomings, have the members of the police force been idle. 









THE play has ever beeii popular with Californians. Iix 
"early days" when the real life drama was a shifting" 
panorama of tragedy, comedy, burlesque and farce intermin- 
gled, possessing more thrilling attractions than the truthful 
delineations of Shakespeare's most interesting characters, San 
Franciscans were not content without their mimic shows. Play 
houses were even more numerous than in later years, and al- 
though the character of many of them "was somewhat ques- 
tionable, there were some that would at the present day com- 
mand a degree of respect. 

The circus was the pioneer entertainment bordering nearest 
to the histrionic art. Early in the year of 1849, a Mr. Rowe 
pitched his big tent on Kearny Street, near Clay, and day after 
day, and night after night, entertained hundreds of eager spec- 
tators by feats of equestrianship, and other performances ordi- 
narily enacted inside the circus ring. Next, and shortly, fol- 
lowed Foley's circus, which was established on Montgomery 
Street, near California. These circus amusements constituted 
the bill of public entertainments, and hence were very nume- 
rously patronized. It was a change from the monotony of the 
every-day life of the population, and although the j)erform- 
ances in these days of "excellence," would be denounced as 
third-rate and unworthy of notice or patronage, those forty- 
niners were only too glad to welcome them as some of the 
"varieties" that go to make up the much relished "spice of 
life." The prices charged for the privilege of attending them 
were, however, of the very highest order — three dollars being 


cliarged for pi+ seats, five for box places, and for the dignified 
and altogether superior privilege of a private stall, fifty-five 
dollars had to be counted out to the door-tender. 

"Jeems Pipes, of Pijoesville," then entirely (and yet unpro- 
fessionally) known as Mr. Stephen C. Massett, next sought to 
amuse the San Francisco public, by giving a concert (in which 
he alone was first, second and third principal, and full chorus) 
interspersed with some comic recitations. Therefore, on the 
22d of June, 1849, the little school-house on the plaza was 
thronged to suffocation, and Mr. Massett successfully deported 
himself; winning, besides many encomiums for his wonderful 
versatility, the snug net returns of five hundred dollars. The 
only piano in the country at that time, was used on the occa- 
sion, and although it was announced on the bills that "the 
front seats would be reserved for ladies," there were only four 

The first real theatrical performance, was given in January, 
1850, in a building on Washington Street, opj)osite the plaza, 
known as Washington Hall. The play was The Wife, a fit 
subject for the almost exclusive male population, and certainly 
a play well chosen for the attractiveness of its title. The act- 
ing, however, was indifferent, and did not win the anticipated 
applause. The tastes of the jDeople were not as crude as their 
appearance indicated, and then, as they have ever since done, 
they demanded some proof of merit in addition to extraordi- 
nary assumption. 

The circuses had ceased to be attractive, and to supply the 
popular demand for a higher class of entertainments, Mr. Row^e 
converted his tent into a theatre, and fortunately secured the 
services of a traveling company of English actors, some of 
whom possessed undoubted talent. These artists endeavored 
to excel, and their efforts were heartily appreciated. Under 
the uncouth garb, and hid away beneath the shaggy and un- 
kempt locks of the rough looking humans that composed the 
audiences at these places of amusement, there lurked a degree 
of intelligence and refinement that was surprising; and only 
by the various common-place performances that sought to win 
approbation was it awakened to assert itself, and demand 
more worthy entertainments. This, then, was really the begin- 
ning of legitimate theatricals in San Francisco. Model artists 
had hoped to profitably (to themselves) corrupt the public taste 


and morals by rejDeated disgraceful exhibitions ; and numerous 
much-self-jDraised dramatic companies had striven to "uin recog- 
nition by giving commonplace and vulgar entertainments; but 
the public taste was not so vitiated as much of its conduct 
would betoken, and these were for the most part unsuccessful. 

In April, a small theatre was opened on Washington Street, 
near Montgomery, and was occupied by a French company' 
nearly the whole time of its existence — it being destroyed by 
fire very soon after oj^ening. The evening of the 4th of July 
following was celebrated by the opening of the "Dramatic 
Museum," on California Street (near Montgomery), by a com- 
pan}'- of amateurs, who acquitted themselves very creditably, 
and in September the dramatic season was inaugurated by Mr. 
Maguire's "Jenny Lind" (No. 1) being duly opened to the 
pubUc, with a good stock company and some "stars" of ability. 
During the season there were some very talented actors at both 
of the latter theatres, who played well, and were therefore well 
patronized. Meanwhile another theatre had opened on Clay 
Street, near Montgomery, but this, for some reason, never 
became popular. 

The disastrous fire of May, 1851, swept away most all these 
buildings for amusement, some of which were never rebuilt. 
The "Adelphi," a French theatre, on Dujjont Street, which had 
been built during the preceding year, escaped, and continued 
in successful operation, while the "Jenny Lind" (No. 2), and 
the "Dramatic Museum" were both speedily rebuilt and re- 

The "American Theatre," a superior structure for those days, 
was next to call for a share of public patronage. It was oj^ened 
October 20, 1851, and at once by the talent its management 
secured, attracted full houses. 

On the 14th of February, 1852, Mrs. Lewis Baker was an- 
nounced to begin an engagement at the Jenny Lind, (which 
theatre was now the most substantial and elegant in the city, 
having been reared on the ruins of "Jenny Lind No. 2," de- 
stroyed in the fire of June 22d preceding). This lady won 
golden crowns of praise from Californian audiences. Her 
engagement at the "Jenny Lind" was wonderfully successful. 
Although she was poorly assisted (except by her husband, who 
accompanied her), from the first night's performance, she was 
greeted with hearty applause, and so long as she remained. 


the entliusiasm tliat she had awakened grew more intense, until 
she finally became to be almost adored by the whole theatre- 
going public. There have been other actors and actresses in 
San Francisco, some of whom have by their ability won world- 
wide renown, and stand unrivalled in their profession; but 
there has not been among them a single one who was so warmly 
received aud retained, and who had such a jDOwerful though 
gentle hold on the sympathies and love of the people as Mrs. 
Lewis Baker. 

Miss Matilda Heron — Avho appeared on the San Francisco 
stage during Mrs. Baker's stay, and who San Franciscans de- 
light to claim as their own creation — by the reform movement 
she led in dramatic art, by her intelligent renditions, and her 
gentle, womanly disposition, shared the meed of praise, and 
was lifted into considerable renown; but all the glory she won, 
and all the esteem she merited and received, did not lessen the 
love that was bestowed upon Mrs. Baker. 

Mr. Baker, daring the sojourn of himself and wife in San 
Francisco, had the *nanagement successively of the "Adeli^hi," 
during the season of 1852-3, and the "American" during D.853 
— Mrs. Baker in the meantime playing almost constantly at 
these theatres. On January 2d, 1854, they departed from San 
Francisco, and repaired to Philadelphia, where, among their 
former associates, they retired to the enjoyment of the com- 
petency their noble exertion in California had gained for them. 

In the latter part of 1853, the "Metropolitan," then said to 
be "the most magnificent temple of histrionic art in Amer- 
ica," was opened by Mrs. Catherine N. Sinclair and James E. 

From the time Mrs. Baker first appeared in San Francisco, 
up to the present date, there have been maintained constantly, 
numerous theatres and halls for theatrical performances, at 
which have appeared successively almost all the prominent 
dramatic and operatic artists of America, and many of the 
leading professionals of Europe; giving the San Francisco 
public the same opportunit}^ for seeing and hearing persons 
possessing the best talent, that the residents of the larger and 
older cities of the world enjoy. Even in earlier days, the 
theatre buildings were of a superior order, both as to conven- 
ience and elegance; and to-day the temples dedicated to his- 
trionic art, in which the beauty and "chivalry" of San Fran- 


cisco assemble to be charmed or repelled — as tlie case may be 
— are not anywhere sur^mssed. 

After the legitimate j^lay had been established, there were 
no j)eculiarly marked ej^ochs or periods in the history of the 
stage in San Francisco; but everything moved along in the 
proper channel, succeeding stars striving to excel i:)receding, 
and each new theatre being an imi:)rovement uj)on those that 
had j)reviously existed, a higher excellence being aimed at by 
actors, managers and builders. We therefore have stepped 
over the period intervening between the embryotic and present. 
Among the theatres that in this interim flourished or failed, 
but that are now known only as of the past, were the "Union," 
"Eureka," "Olymjjic," "San Francisco," "Lyceum," second 
"Metropolitan," and second "American." 

The local dramatic talent of to-day is superior. Few cities 
in the United States are equally favored in this resj^ect. This 
is perhaps due to public discrimination; for there is no city 
where the general public is more fault-finding with their actors 
and actresses than San Francisco. Yet the public is also 
api^reciative and generous. It is therefore natural for talent 
to seek recognition in such a community, and, having sought 
and found, to remain and enjoy the benefits resulting. 


The California is the oldest theatre in the city devoted to 
legitimate drama. Of the numerous others that have from 
time to time ranked first in popular favor, none remain, they 
having been converted to other use, torn down, or destroyed 
by fire. The California was built in 1869, at a cost of $125,- 
000, and was the largest and most commodious theatre until 
the erection of Wade's O^^era House, recently opened. It was 
built by a stock company, and under the management of Mr. 
John McCullough has proved a jDrofitable investment. Since 
the opening night, it has been the favorite resort for amusement 
seekers, and no doubt will long continue to attract its old pat- 
rons, even though it has superior rivals. Bush Street, near 
Kearny, has so long been the gathering place of the theatre 
goers that, although there may be dazzling attractions at the 
new play houses, they will continue to travel the familiar path 
for some time to come, from sheer force of habit. 

Did the foot-prints of those who, in the diversity of their 


impersonations, tread the stage with the firm steps of a con- 
queror, stamp upon it in an ecstacy of assumed rage, move 
with the measured pace of burdened melancholy, or with the 
elastic step of boundless joy, remain undisturbed, there Avould 
be seen upon the boards of the California the tracks of many 
dramatic and musical celebrities. 


It is not unfrequently that the history of the lives of those 
who choose the stage as a profession is interspersed with ro- 
mantic episodes. But with a majority of actors and actresses 
life has a reality that is oftener sad than sweet. What the 
public sees of them induces the belief that their life is a book 
of illuminations — the turning of each new leaf revealing a more 
brilliant picture. But what the public sees is the bright side — 
to which there is a darker. The theatre itself is emblematic ; 
to the audience, it is rich in ornaments, brilliant with the work 
of the artist ; the ceilings and walls, the curtains and scenery, 
glow in their warmth of colors, and are radiant with beauty. 
But behind the scenes are unpainted timbers, bare walls, dusty 
canvas, and all is cheerless. 

John McCullough is a native of Ireland, born November 15, 
1837. Hio father was a small farmer, and therefore John's 
only educational advantage was the county school, which he 
attended quite regularly until he was fourteen years old, when 
Tie conceived the notion of coming to America. He left home 
and arrived in New York, having only enough money remain- 
ing to keep him two or three days. Without delay, he hast- 
ened to Philadelphia, where he hoped he might find some 
trace of an uncle who had formerly lived there, but from whom 
he had heard nothing for many years. 

Passing along the street one day, he saw a sign over a door, 
"bearing his uncle's name, and a young man standing at the 
front, who resembled his father. Upon inquiry, he was happily 
surprised, for it was really his uncle's place of business. 

His uncle was engaged in a fancy chair manufacturing busi- 
ness, and John was immediately transferred to the factory as 
an apprentice — -and, although it may appear strange, it was 
here that the first spark of ambition for the stage was enkin- 
dled in him. And this was how it came about : 

There was a young man by the name of Burke, a fellow 


apprentice, who had a Tvonderful fondness for stimulating' 
stomachics and Shakespeare. Often when in a hilarious mood, 
and during the absence of his master, he would indulge in 
dramatic recitations, his favorite declamations being from 
Shakes2?eare's most tragic scenes; and if it were necessary to 
make his acting more forcible by illustration, John was his 
chosen victim. He would often grasp him by the throat, hurl 
him upon a sofa, and stab him to death with a paint-brush, 
asking him to be Julius C?esar, while he would play the part 
of Brutus and Mark Antony, by turns. This procedure was 
most astonishing to the young Hibernian, who was alike ig- 
norant of Caesar and Antony, and to whom Shakespeare was 
only a queer-sounding word. Yet he enjoyed the business, 
and suspected Burke to be a person of unusual importance. 
From this time, it was not long until John had extended his 
acquaintance among the stage-struck youths of the cit}^ and 
by the son of a lager beer saloon-keeper was introduced into 
an amateur dramatic club. His great fondness for the drama, 
was here developed, and by close application to dramatic 
studies, he made such progress in the new profession that he 
secured an engagement for a small weekly salary, at the Arch. 
Street Theatre. Two years elapsed, during which time he 
had passed through the vicissitudes to which young actors are 
singularly subjected, when by accident he met and was intro- 
duced to Edwin Forrest, who had then won his great renown. 
He thought nothing of this meeting until, a few days after, Mr. 
Forrest spoke to him on the street. 

Forrest was pleased with him, and invited him to accom- 
pany him to Boston; and to release him from an engagement 
with Mrs. Garretson, at the Walnut Street Theatre, Mr. For- 
rest played gratuitously at that lady's benefit. McCullough's 
salary was doubled, and he received much encouragement 
from Mr. Forrest. This recognition of his ability developed 
his greatest power, and no doubt changed his future career. 

In 18G6, he accompanied Mr. Forrest to San Francisco, 
where, at Maguire's Opera House, he supported him in the 
characters of lago, Edgar, Pythias, Macduff, etc. Mr. Forrest 
being imcertain as to his future course in the East, McCul- 
lough decided to remain in California, and therefore continued 
at Maguire's. His first prominent part, after Mr. Forrest's 
departure, was Richard III. He supported different stars that 


came along, and in their absence took leading parts himself^ 
being most successful in Richelieu. 

When, in 1869, the California Theatre was opened, he and 
Mr. Barrett became lessees. Mr. BaiTett soon after retired,, 
and Mr. McCullough became sole lessee, and "svith Mr. Barton 
Hill as " acting manager," has continued in that capacity ever 

Under Mr. McCullough's management, the California has- 
been very popular. Perhaps his greatest success as manager 
was the production of Monte Crislo, which, during its four 
weeks' run, yielded an aggregate sum of $30,000. The most 
successful local play that has been j^roduced in the city is 
Solid Silvei', written by Col. Barnes of this city, which was- 
produced in the California by the stock company, the author 
taking a prominent character. 

As an actor, Mr. McCullough is a great favorite in Cali- 
fornia, and has gained universal applause in the principal 
cities of the United States. His Eichelieu, which is his best- 
sustained character, is a fine study, and his Hamlet has been, 
much admired, though his famous rivals in the latter role have 
gained so many merited laurels that the public will not accept, 
any representation of that character that is not finished irt 
every respect. 

Much of Mr. McCullough's success is due to the talented 
stock company that has so ably supported him. In this par- 
ticular the California Theatre has been more fortunate than 
many of the larger theatres in Eastern cities. The San Fran-^ 
cisco public have also greatly encouraged home talent, and 
their verdict as to the merits of an actor has become to be 
accepted as pretty nearly correct. 


Thomas Maguire is the pioneer theatrical manager on the 
Pacific Coast . So many conquests has he made for the stage, 
under so many adverse and discouraging circumstances, that 
he is considered the " Napoleon of the Drama." 

He is a native of Ireland, and came to California at the time 
of the great " overland rush." He first became j^art owner of 
the Parker House, which stood on the ground now occupied 
by the City Hall. He had part of it converted into a theatre 
in 1850, which he named the Jenny Lind. On May 4th, 1851, 


the whole building was destroyed by fire, but was rebuilt at 
once, and the theatre opened as "Jenny Lind No. 2," on June 
13th, and on the 22d, was again burned. A brick building 
was now constructed, and "Jenny Lind No. 3 "was opened, on 
the 4th of October, 1851. This building yet stands, and is now 
used as the City Hall. The Jenny Lind dynasty, though 
supreme, was brief, the last successor of the line, having 
ceased to rule Aug. 15, 1852, at which time the city pur- 
chased the building for $200,000. 

Three months later, Mr. Maguire opened the San Francisco 
Hall, on Washington Street, above Montgomery; in May, 
1853, changed the name to " San Francisco Theatre," and in 
November, 1856, christened it Maguire's Opera House. This 
building was torn down when Montgomery Avenue was 

In May, 1864, Mr. Maguire had, at great expense, completed 
a new building, which he named Maguire's Academy of Music. 
This was opened to the public and continued as a place of 
amusement until 1867, when it was sold at auction and con- 
verted into stores. His loss on this venture was over $200,- 

He has been connected, as lessee, with every theatre on the 
Coast outside of San Francisco. Many of the San Francisco 
theatres also have been under his management. He was owner 
and proprietor of the first, lessee of the second Metropolitan, 
and lessee of the first and second American; in 1872, he became 
lessee of the Alhambra, on Bush Street, now Maguire's New 
Theatre; and in the year following, he assumed control of 
Maguire's Ojoera House — both of which continue under his 
management. He is also present lessee of Baldwin's Academy 
of Music. 

Maguire's New Theatre is a very commodious building, capa- 
able of seating sixteen hundred jDeople. The stage is conveni- 
ently arranged for all kinds of performances — the spectacular 
play of Black Crook having been creditably produced upon it. 
During the theatrical season, there is always good talent se- 
cured for this theatre, and the local company number among 
its members some able artists. 

Maguire's Ojiera House is of small cajDacity, though well 
arranged for its purjDOse. It is mostly devoted to minstrels of 
the higher grade, sometimes, however, giving a series of oper- 


atic performances. It is well patronized, almost every person 
going occasionally, while many are regular patrons. 


In 1873, Dr. Thomas Wade, a successful dentist of San 
Trancisco, conceived the idea of building an Oj)era House 
that would rival in size and elegance any building of its char- 
acter in the United States. The site chosen was on Mission 
Street, somewhat x-emote from any other places of amusement, 
though a central location in the city. It was projected under 
the name of the "Grand Opera House," but as a compliment 
to its founder, was christened at its opening, "Wade's Oj^era 

Considering the number of theatres and halls for amusement, 
and the comparatively small population of the city, this enter- 
prise was deemed by many as premature. For this apj^arently 
very good reason, the projector did not receive that encourage- 
ment that is generally extended to such worthy undertakings, 
and hence its history, from inception to completion, was not of 
uninten'upted progress. Owing to sudden reverses, Mr. Wade 
was compelled to organize a stock corporation or forego the 
prosecution of the work. This plan met with unexjDected 
opposition, and work on the building was suspended for the 
greater part of a year. 

During this period of inactivity, Mr. Frederick W. Bert 
became the Doctor's coadjutor and lessee. The two, by dint 
of great perseverance and energy, succeeded in organizing a 
company, and the building was then speedily pushed to com- 

The Opera House was opened to the public on the evening 
of January 17th, 187G, and the spectacular play of Snowflake 
was produced, and continued with unabating success for four 
■weeks. The production of this j)lay, the scenic character of 
w^hich was sufficient to test the capabilities of the stage, took 
the public by surprise, and at once placed Wade's Opera House 
in the first rank of popular places of amusement. 

Mr. M. J. McDonald, a capitalist in the city, is president of 
the corporation. Much credit is due him for the material aid 
lie extended to the association when the progress of the build- 
ing was so seriously imj^eded. 

The area covered by the Opera House is 110 x 275 feet. There 


are only two theatres that have a larger auditorium in the 
United States. It has a seating capacity of three thousand, 
but as many as four thousand jDorsons have occupied it. The 
external architecture is Eomanesque and Italian. The corni- 
ces are highly ornamented, and the balcony surmounting the 
wall is relieved by vases and small statuary. The central cor- 
ridor leading to the auditorium, terminates in a grand vesti- 
bule, 35 X 81 feet, opening through to a skylight above. In the 
centre of the vestibule is a beautiful crs'stal fountain, shower- 
ing cologne water from myriads of needle jets. 

The auditorium is divided into the orchestra or parquette, 
dress circle, balcony, family circle, and gallery; twenty-two 
mezzonine boxes, and twelve handsomely furnished proscenium 
boxes. The predominating color is light blue; the chairs, 
drapery, woodwork and frescoe, all showing this tint. When 
brilliantly lighted, the effect is beautiful. 

Upon entering, the immense size of the auditorium is at once 
remarked. The lofty proscenium, flanked on either side by 
elegant private boxes in front, with tier above tier receding ia 
the distance behind, are contemplated in silent admiration. 
The ceiling is arranged as a sounding board, and no seat is 
objectionable because of its remoteness from the stage. 

The old style roll-up "drop" is supplanted by an artistically 
painted lift curtain, which draws up bodily. 

The stage proper is eighty-seven feet deep by one hundx'ed. 
and six wide, and is formed of sections — all or any part of 
which can be removed in a few minutes. The flats are im- 
mense — the largest in use in the world, being twenty-four feet 
high. There is an excellent arrangement whereby the scenes 
can be either lifted to the top of the building or lowered into 
the basement, where they remain until required for use on the 
stage. The foot-lights are below the stage, and different col- 
ored globes are so arranged over them that any color of light 
desired can be thrown upon the scenes. These, with all the 
burners in the building, are lighted by electricity — the bat- 
teries, and the keys for lessening or increasing the volume of 
light being behind the scenes. Every imjDrovement, of what- 
ever character, whether for the comfort and safety of the pat- 
rons, for ventilation, view, or stage machinery, has been intro- 
duced, and "Wade's Opera House, although in a city scarce 
thirty years old, and remote from the great centres of art, has 
no superior in the world. 


The art gallery occupies the space over the entrance hall, 
and is 40x80 feet in dimensions. The ceiling is lofty, and ex- 
tending entirely around the walls is a light gallery, for conven- 
ience in arranging the paintings. Opening into it are numerous 
•offices, designed for artists' studios. This, by a system of corri- 
dors, can be connected with the theatre, and forms a most pleas- 
ant promenading hall for the visitors. Its walls will be adorned 
l)y paintings by local artists, and also some select pieces from 
European masters. Statuary also will be introduced. The 
iurniture is elegant, and detracts not a whit from the general 
artistic surroundings, 

Mr. Fred. "W. Bert, the lessee, is a son of E. G. Bert, for- 
merly a lessee of the old Metropolitan theatre, in San Fran- 
■cisco. He was born in Harrisburg, Penn., is thirty -three 
years of age, and has been identified with histrionic art for 
many years. He has also had some journalistic experience, 
having been at one time connected with the Morning Call. 
The perseverance he manifested in the building of the Opera 
House is a sufficient guarantee that under his management the 
reputation it has gained will rather increase than diminish. 


There are numerous halls for lectures, concerts, and all 
that class of entertainments, most of which are not arranged 
for theatrical performances. Piatt's Hall, on Montgomery 
Street, is an exception, having a tolerably well arranged 

The Bella Union Theatre, on Kearny Street, near Washing- 
ton, in early days one of the famous melodeons, has recently 
been remodeled, and is now conducted in the st^'le of the better 
class variety theatres. Under its present management, it has 
Tery greatly reformed as to the character of the company and 
the pieces played. Because of its former bad reputation, 
many respectable persons still persist in shunning it; but while 
it is true that among its patrons there are many rough and 
vicious characters, who from habit continue to frequent it, it 
is also a fact that good order is always preserved, and there is 
no indecent conduct permitted either ujDon the stage or in the 

To those who have only attended the finer and more fash- 
ionable theatres, where stage scenery, actors' costumes, and the 


toilets in the audience, all present the most brilliant and ricli 
colors, a visit to the Bella "Union would be entertaining-. The 
audience is mostly composed of males, and coming as they do 
from all ranks of society, they make a j^icture as well worth an 
evening's study as the plays that are enacted on the stage. 

There are perhaps two other theatres, not yet mentioned, 
devoted to melo-drama, farce, low comedy, and all that class 
of plays that respectable people would prefer not to be seen 
jDatronizing. There are melodeons, concert saloons, dance- 
cellars, and dives more numerous by far than society should 
tolerate, but because other cities that are older and (ought to 
be) wiser than San Francisco permit these pitfalls to stand open 
in their midst, society here points to them and says: " there's 
precedent, and ye see they shan't outdo us in anything — even 
in vice! " — and so it is. Yet, in these most vicious places, there 
are sometimes found young actors an actresses that only force 
of circumstances could keep there — men and women as pure 
and free from sin as are the best sons and daughters in the 
land. There is to-day a young' actress playing before the most 
refined audiences in the United States, and greeted with ap- 
plause wherever she goes, who sjDcnt her younger years before 
the most vulgar and debased audiences in San Francisco. She 
passed through the filth unstained. 







"TT"T"ITH his soul still pent up with the inspiration it 
VV caught iu his visit to Europe and the Holy Land, 
Mark Twain dropped down upon San Francisco, in 1868, and 
with a shocking disregard of public sentiment, determined to 
relieve himself by delivering a lecture. His characteristic 
"innocence" is manifest by the manner in which he so suc- 
cessfully attracted a "full house" to hear him. In originality 
his scheme ranks with that resorted to by "Washington Irving 
to advertise his "History of New York." 

A few days previous to the evening appointed for the lec- 
ture, the following correspondence was printed and circulated, 
through the city : 


San Ebanoisco, June 30th. 
Me. Mark Twain — Dear Sir: Hearing that yoii are about to sail for 
New York, in the P. M. S. S. Company's steamer of the 6th July, to pub- 
lish a book, and learning with the deepest concern that you propose to 
read a chapter or two of that book iu public before you go, we take this 
method of expressing our cordial desire that you will not. We beg and 
implore you do not. There is a limit to human endurance. 

We are your personal friends. We have your welfare at heart. We de- 
sire to see you prosper — and it is upon these accounts and upon these 
only, that we urge you to desist from the new atrocity you contemplate. 
Yours, truly, 
Wm. H. L. Barnes, Kear-Ad'l Thatcher, Samuel Williams, Gen. Mc- 
Cook, Geo. R. Barnes, Noah Brooks, Maj. Gen. Halleck, J. B. 
Bowman, Leland Stanford, John McComb, Capt. Pease, A. Bad- 
lam, John Skae, Abner Barker, Dr. Bruner, Louis Cohu, Mer- 
cantile Library, T. J. Lamb, Prop'rs Occidental, Prop'rs Buss . 
House, Prop'rs Cosmopolitan, Prop'rs lick House, Michael 
Beese, Frank Soule, Dr. Shorb, Pioche, Bayeique & Co., Asa 
D. Nudd, Ben. Truman, 0. O. Eldridge, Board of Aldermen, 
Geo. Pen Johnson, Maj. Gen. Ord, Bret Harte, J. W. 'i ucker, 
B. B. Swain, Ned Ellis, Judge Lake, Joseph H. Jones, Col. 
Catherwood, Dr. McNulty, A. J. Marsh, Sam. Piatt, Wm. C. 
Ealstou, Mayor McCoppin, E. B. Rail, R. L. Ogden, Thos. 
Cash, M. B. Cox, The Citizen Military, The Odd Pellows, The 
Orphan Asylum, various Benevolent Societies, Citizens on Foot 
and Horseback, and 1500 in the Steerage. 


lu the following reply, his "inuoceuce" shows itself at the 
very beginning. Observe how he introduces it — " to the 1500 
land others," as if he had just read the communication from 
the public, and in the flush of the excitement it occasioned, 
xashly replied, addressing it to the final signature, it being the 
freshest in his mind: 

San Fbancisco, June 30th. 

To THE 1500 AND Others: It seems to me that your course is entirely 
niipieceileiited. Heretofore, Mben lecturers, singers, actors, and other 
friuuls, hiive said that they -were about to leave town, you have always 
been the very lirst people to come out in a card beseeching them to bold 
ou fur just one night more, and inflict just one more performance on the 
pub.ic — but as soon as / want to take a farewell benefit, you come after 
me with a card signed by the whole community and the Board of Aldermen, 
praying me not to do it. But it isn't of any use. You cannot move me 
from my fell purpose. I v:iU torment the peoj^le if I want to. I have a 
better right to do it than these strange lecturers and orators, that come 
here from abroad. It only costs the public a dollar a i)iece, and, if they 
can't stand it, what do they stay here for? Am I to go away and let them 
have peace and quiet for a year and a half, and then come back and only 
lectuie them twice? What do you take me for? 

No, gentlemen, ask of me anything else, and I will do it cheerfully; but 
do not ask me not to afflict the peoj^le. 1 wish to tell them all I know 
about Venice. I wish to tell them about the City of the Sea — that most 
•venerable, most brilliant, and proudest Kepublic the world has ever seen. 
I wibh to hint at what it achieved in twelve hundred years, and what it 
cost in two hundred. I wish to furnish a deal of pleasant information, 
somewhat highly spiced, but still palatable, digestible, and eminently fitted 
for the intellectuid stomach. My last lecture was not as fine as I thought 
it M'as, but I have submitted this discourse to several able critics, and they 
have pronounced it good. Now, therefore, why should I withhold it. 

Let me talk only just this once, and I will sail positively on the 6th July, 
and stay away until I return from China — two years. 

Yours, truly, Makk Twain. 


Sak FnANCiECO, June 30th. 
Mr. Mark Twain: Learning with profound regret that you have concluded 
to postpone your departure until the 6th July, and learning, also, with un- 
speakable giief, that you propose to read from your forthcoming book, or 
lecture again before you go, at the New Mercantile Library, wo hasten to 
beg of you that you will nut do it. Curb this spirit of lawless violence, 
and emigrate at once. Have the vessel's bill for your passage sent to us. 
We will pay it. Your friends, 

Pacific Board of Brokers, 
Wells, Fargo & Co., 
The Merchants' Exchange, 
Pacific Union Express Co., 
The Bank of California, 
Ladies' Co-operative Union, 
S. i\ Olympic Club, 
Cal. Typographical Union. 

San Fbancisco, June 30th. 
Mk. Maek Twain— Dear Sir: Will you start, now, without any unnec- 
essary delay? Yours, truly, 

I'roprietors of the Alta, Bulletin, Times, Call, Examiner, Figaro, 
Spiritof the Times, Dispatch, News Letter, Golden City. Golden 
Eia, Dramatic Chronicle, Police Gazette, The Cahfornian, The 
Overland Monthly. 



Sak Fbancisco, June SOth. 
Mb. Maek Twain — Dear Sir: Do not delay your departure. You can 
come back and lecture another time. In the language of the -worldly — 
you can "cut and come again." Your friends, The Cleegy. 

San Fbancisco, June 30tli. 
Mb. Maek Twain — Dear Sir: You had better go. l''ours, 

The Chief op Police. 


The climax of his "innocence" is reached in confounding 
the preparation for celebrating the "fourth of July," with a 
public demonstration over himself. It was only ' ' unavoidably 

San Fbancisco, June 30tli 
Gentlemen : Restrain your emotions ; you observe that they cannot 
avail. Eead : 



Thursday Evening, July 2, i{ 




The Oldest of the Republics, VENICE, 

Pasi and Present. 

Box Office open Wednesday and Thursday. 




Doors open at 7. Orgies to comme 

at 8 p.m. 

Jl3"The public displays and ceremonies projected to give fitting 
eclat, to tliis occasion, liave been unavoidably delayed until the 4th, 
The lecture will be delivered certainly on the 2d, and the event will be 
celebrated two days afterward by a discharge of artillery on the 4ih, a 
procession of citizens, the reading of the Declaration of Independence, 
and by a gorgeous display of fire-works from Russian Hill in the evening, 
which I have ordered at my sole expense, the cost amounting to 
eighty thousand dollars, 


Thnrsdajr EveniuK, July 2, 1S68. 

It is hardly necessary to add that the lecture was a success 
-financially. . 








- T'HEN any person engages in an enterprise of more than 
' V ordinary magnitude, no matter what the character of 
the undertaking may be, there are always those who feel it 
their duty to express a want of faith in it, and look upon such 
enterprise with distrust. This fact is more especially not6d 
when the undertaking is of a literary or scientific nature, and 
it is not unfrequently decided by those who assume to interest 
themselves in it, to be visionary and chimerical; the expression 
of such sentiments has done more to retard true progress than 
all other opjDOsing causes combined. Not every one who has 
genius has the indomitable courage required to meet the dif- 
ficulties that advanced ideas must overcome before the world 
will accejDt enlightenment. 

Those ideas may burn and consume the brain that conceived 
them, yet the quickening breath of utterance is withheld be- 
cause of a knowledge that they will be but mock-phrases in 
the mouths of cynical critics. There is a graven histoiy that 
gives proof of this; tributes that are recorded on imperishable 
monuments that mark the spot where dead men sleep, tell us 
of the genius that the living possessed, and how ambition was 
wrecked- and intellect smothered by an inappreciative public. 
The history of those who have attained to distinction fur- 
nishes evidence of the struggles through which the road they 
had to travel led, ere they had climbed beyond the reach of 
those who were pulling them back. With all this before him, 
the man of genius must coolly contemplate the obstacles that 
loom up to view, and resolve that nothing, however antago- 
nistic or jDOwerful, that stands in his path, shall prevent his 

califoenia's historian. 163 

Siicli, no doubt, was Mr. Bancroft's resolution, wlaen lie 
entered upon his literary labors. The task he j)ut upon him- 
self to i^erform was of such magnitude, and its j)roper ac- 
comj)lishment suggested so many difficulties to be met, that 
jaerhaps none other than himself would have undertaken it; 
and certainly no other person, however fortunate his advan- 
tages, would have made such advances toward completeness. 
The Native Races of the Pacific States is the first fruit of Mr. 
Bancroft's industry. Although some might be surprised when 
informed that fifteen years were passed in its preparation, and 
be disposed to charge its author with indolence or inattention 
to purpose, when the vast amount of work, and the many dis- 
advantages under which that work had to be performed, are 
considered, the wonder is, how he did complete it in so short 
a time ! 

Perhaps we can do no better than to embody herein the 
sketch of Mr. Bancroft, his literary promptings and pursuits, 
from the pen of his intimate and cultivated friend, J. Boss 
Browne: "Hubert H. Bancroft is a native of Ohio, de- 
scended from a New England family, and known, since 1856, 
in San Francisco, as an enterprising business man, senior 
partner in a book and publishing establishment. That he 
cherished an ambition to be known as a writer rather than as 
a publisher and seller of books, was suspected by few. Yet 
soon after starting in business, his tastes led him to commence, 
in a small way, the collection of j)riiited matter relating to his 
adopted home. The taste once indulged gradually assumed 
strength; in ten years, his library had taken from commercial 
pursuits more than half his attention; during the past five, 
it has monopolized the whole. Exactly what were his ideas 
and aims during the first years of his new work we know 
not; though men were not wanting who sought his motive in 
some deep laid scheme for pecuniary gain. Thus do we grow 
up with a man, meet him habitually in the familiar intercourse 
of business or acquaintanceship, yet know him little or not at 
all. In too many cases, when some individual among us is 
of more than ordinary worth, the community is either utterly 
indifi'erent to his labors and aspirations, or after heartily re- 
pressing, hindering, and baffling his highest purposes of hfe, 
finds out his merit only when he is dead, and pays a perccr.t- 
age of its debt of honor and praise to his memory. 


" Mr. Bancroft followed liis favorite path with ever-increasing 
ardor, but into his biog-rai)hical zeal he seems to have infused 
a healthy leaven of business common-sense, for he successfully- 
avoided the shoals of bibliomania. Perfect sets of Hulsius and 
De Bry, rare specimens from the press of celebrated printers, 
large paper editions and uncut leaves, ever held a secondaiy 
place in his affections. Nothing relating to his speciality was 
ever rejected; but the main object was always to secure books 
containing actual information, to form, as he expressed it, a 
* working hbrary.' " 


As previously stated, Mr. Bancroft began as long ago as 
1859 the collection of books relating in any way to the history 
of the Western half of North America. It was apparently an 
accidental beginning; as the first selections were made when 
he was personally engaged in the routine work of classifying 
and arranging on their proper shelves, the books that were on 
sale in his store. 

At this time, perhaps, a dozen volumes bearing upon the 
history of California, were set apart for convenient reference — 
Mr. Bancroft possibly entertaining a remote idea that at some 
future time he might desire to consult them. Thus it was 
that the nucleus to one of the largest and most comj)lete 
special libraries in the world, was formed. 

The Evening Bulletin, in an article reviewing Mr. Bancroft's 
work, thus speaks of his library: 

" Thereafter, when he came upon any book bearing on the 
same general subject, he placed it with the others; and the col- 
lection was further increased, through the necessity which he 
was under of amassing various matter relative to the coast, to 
aid him in compiling the Pacific Year-book, which the firm was 
accustomed to issue. At length, finding that the process of 
collection possessed interest to him, he conceived the idea of 
forming a comprehensive library of books and manuscripts re- 
lating to the western half of North America. For the first two 
or three years, he simply took whatever came in his way when- 
ever he went into a book-store or paid a visit to the East. 
Without pursuing any system in the matter, and without mak- 
ing any special effort to obtain any jDarticular books, he gradu- 
ally became more interested, and gave more and more time to 
the work. 


" After securing everything within his reach in America, in 
1862 he visited Europe, and made researches in London, Paris, 
Leipsic, and other of the large cities. Here he appointed 
agents and instructed them to purchase whatever offered. Re- 
turning home, he patiently awaited the increase of his collection, 
and diverted his attention somewhat from his business to the 
new occupation. In 1868, he found himself in possession of 
about five thousand volumes, including pamphlets. In this 
year he again visited Europe on the same errand, extending 
his researches to Madrid, Rome, Vienna, and other continental 
cities, and practically exhausting the floating literature of the 
kind he sought. In 1869, he became so absorbed in his labors 
that he turned over the active management of his business to 
his brother, and determined to devote the remainder of his life 
to enlarging his Hbrary and making available to the world its 
treasures. Just as he was becoming discouraged at the poor 
prospect of raaking further additions to his collection, the 
Bihlioteca Imperial de Mejico of the unfortunate Emperor Maxi- 
milian, collected during a period of forty years, by Don Jose 
Maria Andrade, Htterateur and publisher of the City of Mexico, 
was thrown upon the market. Mr. Bancroft telegraphed his 
London agent to proceed at once to Leipsic, and purchase as 
much as he could. The result was that although the agent did 
not exercise the discrimination he might, he obtained 3,000 
additional volumes, many of them very rare and valuable, 
which he could not otherwise have obtained in years of 

" He had now developed a pretty thorough system of col- 
lecting; he knew what were standard works and what of them 
he still wanted, and he was making special efforts to make up 
the deficiencies. Not long after the Maximilian sale, Puttick 
& Simpson, book auctioneers of London, made a large sale of 
Pacific Coast books, and Mr. Bancroft obtained about a thousand 
volumes therefrom. Acquisitions from the sale of other Euro- 
pean and American collections followed, and in 1869, ten years 
after he began his important task, he was the possessor of 
16,000 volumes, boifnd and unbound, besides maps, manu- 
sciipts, and extensive files of Pacific Coast journals. Since 
that date the collection has been still further enlarged. Ber- 
nard Quaritch, the famous London book collector, frequently 
had large lots of books come into his hands, catalogues of 


•wbicli "were sent to Mr. Bancroft, wlio would mark what be 
wanted, and thus get maybe one hundred volumes at a time. 
The newsjtjaper files have also been diligently kept up, and the 
accretions of ancient and contemporary manuscripts have been 
considerable. From New York, he obtained 600 volumes of 
Mexican works, collected by Porter C. Bliss, United States 
Consul at the city of Mexico. The most recent addition was 
the rich collection of the late E. G. Squier, of which Mr. Ban- 
croft purchased all that portion relating to his territory not 
ah'eady on his shelves. To-day the library numbers from 
eighteen to twenty thousand volumes, and, it is needless to 
say, is a most curious, valuable and interesting study. 

" Mr. Bancroft estimates the entire cost to him of the col- 
lection at not less than $60,000. A single volume was obtained 
at an expense of $400, and one set of United States Eoqyloring 
Expedition cost $1,000. One large case contains books, many 
of them very small, which cost an average of $25 each. Splen- 
did though the library already is, lists of books wanted for 
the perfection of the collection are constantly made. 

' ' The eighteen or twenty thousand volumes now in the library 
are written in English, Spanish, Latin, Italian, French, Ger- 
man, Dutch, Portuguese, and Kussian, besides many lingTiistic 
works in Aztec, Maya, and Quiche. In bulk, the English works 
constitute the largest part of the collection, but in number the 
Spanish probably stand at the head. The Latin books are 
some of them veiy valuable — written, however, in the degener- 
ate Latin in which the padres of the old missions were so fond 
of expressing their thoughts. The Italian works are more nu- 
merous than the Latin, and the French number more than 
either. There are a good many valuable GeiTaan works, es- 
pecially collections of travels and voyages. There are also 
some rare old Dutch collections. The Portuguese and Rus- 
sian books are few in number. The Indian books are princi- 
pally grammars, dictionaries, and other linguistic works, num- 
bering some 250 in all, most of them issued under the authority 
of the Church, for the purpose of aiding to bring the natives 
within the ' true fold.' Besides the books, there are files of 
500 Pacific Coast journals. 

' ' The Spanish portion of the collection is decidedly the most 
valuable of all. It is esjDCcially rich in the early standard 
works on America. A Spanish bibliograj)hy of this coast 

California's historian. 167 

^ould date back to the year 1536, when there began to be 
struck off from the press, which Cortes brought over to assist 
in converting the natives, religious and linguistic pamphlets. 
Not a few of these rare brochures may be found in the Ban- 
croft Library. The Catholic missionaries were ardent chroni- 
clers, so that down to the eighteenth century Spanish histori- 
cal works in America take precedence cvei' the English. And 
even during the present century valuable contributions to the 
world's literature have come from Mexican and Central Ameri- 
can scholars. In the Northwest, little printed matter was turned 
out, but manuscripts and mission archives make a pretty com- 
plete record of the Spanish rule. 

" The most valuable work relating to California is the Noticias 
de las Californias, by Padre Francisco Palou. The manuscript 
was completed before 1792, and was dejDosited in the archives 
of the Franciscan College of San Fernando, under the direc- 
tion of which institution the tribes of California were con- 
verted. From a certified copy of these archives, the Noticias 
were j)rinted in 1857, forming two volumes of the valuable se- 
ries of Documentos para la Hisioria de Ilejico, a work published 
by the Mexican Government. 

' ' Palou's Belacion Historica de la Vida y Aposiolicas Tareas, del 
Venerable Padre Fray Junipero Serra, is also a rare and valuable 
work, in the original edition, which Mr. Bancroft has. Much 
material for history has been drawn from it. It covers very 
nearly the same period of California history as the same au- 
thor's Noticias. 

" In most cases, the mission records of Southern California 
have been well preserved. Mr. Bancroft has made a personal 
examination of many of the archives, and with very happy I'e- 
sults. The annals of the Jesuit, Dominican, and Franciscan 
fathers are an important part of his library. Navegacion Es- 
jpecxilativa y Practica, con la ExpUcacion de algunos instrumentos, 
etc., by the Admiral Don Jose Gonzales Cabrena Bueno, is a 
book now very rare, Mr. Bancroft's being the only copy on this 
coast. Cabrillo's voyage along the coast — a manuscript jDre- 
served in the archives in Seville, and published in Madrid in 
1857 — is found in the collection. The best summary of Span- 
ish voyages on our coast, previous to 1792, is given by Don Mar- 
tin Fernandez de Navarrete. Don Pedro Fages, who came with 
the first missionary expedition to California, and was for some 


time Commandante at Monterey, wrote in 1775 an exhaustive 
descriptive work on the country. It appears in print only in 
a French translation, under the title of Voyage en Californie, 
in the Nouvelles Annales de Voyages, Paris, 1844. Sir Francis 
Drake's voyages are not an unimportant feature of the Ban- 
croft collection. There is also the Adas de los Concilios Pro- 
vinciales Mexicanos, being the records of the first provincial 
councils of the Catholic Church in America, which contain let- 
ters under the hand and seal of Philip II., as well as documents 
over the signatures of the most distinguished church digni- 

' ' Many persons made valuable donations to the library. First 
in importance among these must be named General Mariano G. 
Vallejo's enormous collection of jDrivate and official letters, docu- 
ments, and papers of all kinds, which was presented to Mr. Ban- 
croft. The collection embraces between thirty and forty bound 
volumes of manuscripts. It was made with the express view 
of one day using it as the foundation of a history. There are 
here to be seen almost all the original records of the early 
Californian Government, the documents relating to the occu- 
pation of the country by the United States, and letters of busi- 
ness or friendship of the most interesting and curious charac- 
ter, from old distinguished natives, or of visitors to Califor- 
nia — such as from the General's nephew. Governor Alvarado, 
Don Juan Bandini, Colonel Jose Castro, the venerable Gover- 
nor Pio Pico, Sir Edward Belcher, the great English navigator, 
Mofras, the famous French traveler. Dr. McLaughlin, Gover- 
nor of the Hudson Bay Company, from various Russian Gov- 
ernors and Captains, from the English Sir George Simpson, 
and from an illimitable list of American civil, military, and na- 
val officers. General Vallejo is now engaged in dictating a 
connected history of California, under the title of Recuerdos 
Historicos y Personales, which he designs to j^i'esent to Mr. 
Bancroft, to assist him in his great work. The history will fill 
four or five large volumes, and will be based upon the Gener- 
al's own recollections, notes from his father's diary, and cor- 
respondence with old settlers on special points. General 
Vallejo is probably the best informed man living on the later 
Spanish history of California — his birth-place, and his home 
from childhood to past middle age. 

"Hugo Reid, an early pioneer of Southern California, con- 

California's historian. 169 

tributed to the Los Angeles Star, in 1852, a series of papers on 
the Indians of Los Angeles county. This work is a standard 
authority on the aborigines of our State, and is a part of the 
Bancroft collection. 

"Probably a hundred different pioneers have, at the request 
of Mr. Bancroft, written out their recollections of the early 
days, some at considerable length, others in a brief form. 

"The Senora Bandini, of Los Angeles, widow of Don Juan 
Bandini, presented Mr. Bancroft with another valuable collec- 
tion, comprising bundles of original letters and documents of 
historical interest, together with an original, inedited, manu- 
script history of California, from the earliest known Spanish 
settlement up to 1845, written by Don Juan Bandini, assisted 
in parts of his work by the still extant sketches, notes, and 
jottings of his father, Don Jose Bandini. The collection is 
wholly Spanish, and has never been quoted or used in anyway^ 

"Judge Benj. Hayes, of San Diego, since his arrival in the 
State, in 1850, devoted all his leisure time to collecting his- 
torical material concerning the southern counties; all this was 
cheerfully contributed to Mr. Bancroft's Library. Don Manuel 
Castro, of the famous Castro family, and the Pico family like- 
wise, contributed their documents. The family of Thos. O, 
Larkin, formerly U. S. Consul at Monterey, turned over the. 
books of his Consulate." 

As the collection grew from year to year, the books were* 
placed upon shelves without the slightest regard to order. In 
1869, a librarian was appointed, who at once made a catalogue 
of the works which, for ordinary reference, was very conven- 
ient; but when Mr. Bancroft entered upon his great historical 
work, this arrangement proved of little or no avail, as it onlj 
led him into bewildering mazes of history and romance inter- 
mingled, and tended to thwart his purpose. He says himself: 
"I found that, like Tantalus, while up to my neck in water, I 
was dying of thirst. The facts which I required were so copi- 
ously diluted with trash, that to follow different subjects 
through this trackless sea of erudition, in the exhaustive man- 
ner I had proposed, with but one lifetime to devote to the 
work, was simply impracticable." 

A system of indexing was then tried and prosecuted for a 
year, but on account of the great work required to carry out 
the minute details of every subject, it was abandoned for a 


xaore general arrangement, which hapjoily proved available, 
and to the utility of which the public are in a measure indebted 
ior the historical treasures Mr. Bancroft has unearthed from 
this mass of literary debris. From ten to twenty competent 
2)ersons, under the superintendence of Mr. Heniy L. Oak, the 
librarian, were constantly engaged on the work of indexing 
and cataloguing, for four or five years. So it has not been 
without difficulties innumerable, and remarkable perseverance, 
that this storehouse of valuable data has been collected and 
jDlaced so that it will, in future, be practically useful. 


Surrounded by walls adorned with ancient vellum, parch- 
ment, and wonderfully-wrought pajDcr, as used by the literati 
of different nations in the unprogressive jDast, arranged side 
by side with the more embellished volumes of modern times; 
voluminous piles of faded manuscript, some written in almost 
unintelligible characters and dialect, others bearing the stamj) 
of the polished and tidy student, who would no more permit 
a blot to remain upon his pages than a grammatical error; 
page uj)on page of personal reminiscences in this; a complete 
library of anecdote, voyages and travel in that; Si^anish, 
French, Italian, Latin, English, German, Dutch, Portuguese, 
and Aztec manuscrijDts, clippings and books, arranged in 
perfect order, with reference to contents, the very outside ap- 
pearance of which furnishes a study for the obsei-ver; — sur- 
rounded by this motley array of profound lore, Mr. Bancroft 
daily pursues his researches, and daily commits to paper the 
products of his untiring labor. 

Mr. Bancroft is exceedingly industrious, frequently devot- 
ing ten and eleven hours a day to literary work. He generally 
writes standing, and therefore has a convenient desk about 
breast high, for the purpose. Beside the desk is a circular 
table, fitted with a revolving tojD, upon which he arranges his 
authorities, so that by simply turning the top around, any ref- 
erence volumes he may desire comes within easy reach. The 
character of his work necessitates much painstaking, and con- 
sequently the progress is slow. Yet his ever faithful aj^plica- 
tion tells in bulk of matter, though it is feared it may prove 
disastrous to his health if continued. 

California's historian. 171 


The hearty appreciation manifested by literary critics and 
reviewers of his first work, together with the warm reception 
given it by the general public since its issue, is certainly very 
encouraging to the author, and is no doubt the source of 
much satisfaction to him. It is seldom that a first attempt at 
book-making, — especially wherein is embodied so much real 
labor as well as intelligent treatment, — meets with such uni- 
versal praise as has the Native Races of the Pacific States. The 
character of the work would perhaps of itself commend it to 
the student, even though its author had but tolerably per- 
formed his task; but if it did not bear the stamp of thorough- 
ness, and there was manifest any want of care as to the 
validity or authenticity, it would soon fall of its own weight. 

California, although perhaps too boastful of her superior 
natural advantages, has much good reason to honor her his- 
torian, for there is nothing that could add more lustre to her 
name than the undertaking upon which Mr. Bancroft is so 
earnestly engaged. It is pleasant, therefore, to know that the 
local press has almost unanimously congratulated the author, 
and bestowed jDraise upon his literary achievement. 

"With fifteen assistants, Mr. Bancroft is now engaged in a 
literary task of much greater magnitude, importance, and inter- 
est than that already accomplished. He proposes to write a 
history of the Pacific States, from the first coming of Euro- 
peans down to date; paying sjDCcial attention to his own State. 
His collection of original material for Californian history, can 
never be equaled by another collector; in fact, it leaves noth- 
ing to be desired . The plan on which he is carrying on his 
researches in this direction, would seem impracticable by rea- 
son of its magnitude and minuteness of detail, were it not for 
the business-like methods employed, and the marvellous ra- 
jjidity with which he has produced the five volumes of the 
former work. The annals of California are being recorded as 
those of other sections of our country never have been and 
never can be. Our State has had but a century of history; 
■well-directed research will bring it all to light; it is a matter 
of pride to our people that such a work is being done so thor- 






SAN FRANCISCO has an efficient and well-organized fire 
brigade. The force is composed of eleven steam-engine 
companies of twelve men each; five hose companies of nine 
men each, and three hook and ladder companies of fifteen men 
each — all fully equipped with the required apparatus. The en- 
gines, hose-carts and trucks are of the latest approved patterns. 
There are about two hundred and fifty men em^Dloyed in the 
regular department, and more than fifty horses. The men are 
under strict and efficient discipline and have almost universally 
given satisfaction in the performance of their respective duties. 
They are hale sober fellows, capable of great endurance, cool- 
headed and brave. Notwithstanding the merciless element that 
they must battle with — a continual warfare with which it would 
seem would have a hardening efi'ect upon their sympathies — 
they are withal warmhearted and sympathetic persons. 

The horses are the pets of the firemen (excepting perhaps 
the engineer, whose caresses are bestowed upon his symmetric 
engine). In purchasing them, much care is observed to secure 
good, trusty and docile animals. They are of the larger size, 
and are very strong and muscular. They are kept harnessed, 
ready at a moment's notice to step into the traces and be off for 
the scene of fire. It is really wonderful how well trained they 
become as they grow old in the service. "When an alarm is 
sounded on the gong in the engine-house, the horses back 
furiously out of their stalls and take their places in front of the 
engine, are hooked up in a few seconds, and at the word of 
command from the driver, dash pell-mell into the street, heed- 
ing nothing in the way, knowing no master save the man who 
holds the reins. 


The men also are wonderfully expert in their respective 
duties. They m.ay be lounging listlessly about, stupid and 
dull perhaps from the toil of the preceding night, but at the 
first tap of the alarm signal each is at his j)ost, and the now 
smoking engine is parting the throng on the street before the 
inexperienced comprehends the meaning of the alarm. 

The complete ajDparatus is kept in perfect order. An engine 
may emerge from a long conflict with the fire-fiend, grim and 
smoky, a seeming wreck of its former self; but a few hours will 
restore its lost brilliancy, and it stands ready to wage its inces- 
sant warfare. 


The government of the Department is vested chiefly in the 
Chief Engineer. Yet he is subject to the dictation of the Board 
of Fire Commissioners. 

The office of Chief Engineer since the organization of the 
Eire Department has alternated between the present Chief 
{Scannell) and an old resident and exj)erienced engineer — 
Prank Whitney, who is now Chief of the Safe Deposit Com- 
pany's private patrol. There have been some hot contests 
l)etween these gentlemen, rendered especially conspicuous be- 
cause of the popularity of each. 

When the last Board of Fire Commissioners was installed, 
Mr. Whitney held the office of Chief. The incoming Board 
was, however, friendly to Mr. Scannell, and as soon as they 
■were well warmed in their seats they proceeded to depose Mr. 
Whitney, and place in his stead Mr. Scannell. Many of the 
under officers and firemen were also displaced for favorites of 
the Board, and the consequence was, that there was consider- 
able feeling manifested by the friends of the rival Chiefs. 

Whitney contested the office in the courts, and a protracted 
trial resulted in the courts sustaining the action of the Board 
of Fire Commissioners. This contest is spoken of by those in- 
terested as the war between the "outs" and "ins." 

The discipline of the force is strict, requiring promptness and 
sobriety. Frequent drills are had, and everything pertaining 
to the respective duties of officers and men must be mastered. 


This valuable accessory to the regular department force was 
organized the 24th of May, 1875. The intent of the organi- 


zation is to clieck incipient fires, and if necessary, aid the reg- 
ular firemen at extensive conflagrations. The company consists 
of nine men, permanently employed. They have three fleet 
horses, and the same number of wagons. The wagons cany a 
number of small Babcock Extinguishers, together with buck- 
ets and other important aj)i3aratus, and have seats arranged 
for the firemen. They answer all "still" alarms, and are often 
enabled by their means of speedy transit and dexterity, to 
extinguish a fire before it gains sufficient headway to call out 
the regular Fire Department. 

This Patrol is supported by the various Insurance Compa- 
nies, and has done good service since its organization. During 
the first seven months of its existence, it saved $55,000 worth 
of property. 

The building the patrols occupy is located at the corner of 
Ecker and Stevenson Streets. It is comfortably fitted up for 
the occupants — having also a billiard table for the amusement 
of the members. Capt. Eussell White, of Boston, is the 

The Fire Alarm and Police Telegraph is very complete in its 

Notwithstanding the Fire Department is maintained at an 
annual expense of nearly $250,000, the protection it affords to 
property as well as life, is a full recompense for the exj)endi- 






THE rapidity with which the suburban parts of San Fran- 
cisco have been settled has induced the various street rail- 
road companies to extend their main lines, build branch roads, 
and increase their rolling-stock and operating force to an extent 
that gives San Francisco a convenient, -easy and rapid means 
of street locomotion that the residents of few cities enjoy. On 
the other hand, the building of street railroads through sparsely 
populated suburbs has exercised a potent influence toward 
bringing into such districts more settlers. The numerous 
roads that stretch out in every direction through the city have 
leveled the sand-dunes, reclaimed the marshes, filled up the 
gulches, and instead of a desolate and barren waste that was,, 
there have sprung up blocks and streets of comely residences,, 
the homes cf thrifty and industrious citizens. 

There is no city whose public conveyances are more numer- 
ously patronized. Nature is in league with the hackmen and 
railroad companies. In summer she drives the pedestrian into 
the horse-car or hack, to escape the tempestuous gale that 
heralds its coming by billows and clouds of sand and dust that 
come rolling down the highways. In winter they fly to the 
street-car for shelter, to escape the drenching rain that comes 
in torrents flooding sidewalk and street. 

The street-car is the poor man's friend, as it enables him to 
secure a comfortable and roomy home for his family, with the 
advantage of sunshine and pure air, and yet reside not too 
remote from his work. .Its benefits are apparent and appre- 
ciated by the citizens of San Francisco. 



In San Francisco there are eight street railroad companies. 
These employ eight hundred men, and about fifteen hundred 
horses are required for service. There are used daily two 
hundred cars, and the gross earnings of all is considerably 
more than one million dollars annually. More than twenty 
million passengers ride on them during a year. The total 
length of the tracks (double) exceeds fifty miles. 

The cars, as a rule, are comfortably arranged. The seating 
capacity varies, some cars accommodating twenty-four persons 
while others will seat but a dozen. A driver and conductor is 
engaged on the larger two-horse cars, while on the " bobtail,' 
or one-horse car, there is only a driver, a patent box being ar- 
ranged wherein the passengers are required to drop the exact 
fare. The driver keejDS close watch of those that enter to see 
that none ride without paying, and when there is any tardiness 
in complying with the rule, the negligent passenger is warned 
of his duty by the ringing of the " reminding "bell. This sys- 
tem was adopted to escape the losses from the " knocking- 
xlown" fraud said to be so prevalent among conductors. 


The locality thx'ough which this road runs, on account of its 
^elevation, was much sought as a place of residence. The view 
from the hills and the pure atmosphere rendered it a desirable 
place to live. But the hill was too steep to run either horse 
or steam cars up and down the grade, so it became necessary 
to devise some other means of propulsion. 

An endless wire rope, one inch in diameter, passing around 
the drive-wheel of a powerful engine located at the top of the 
hill, and around a strong pulley at the bottom of the grade, 
serves as the tow rope by which the cars are drawn np or down 
the grade. This rope runs in an underground channel-way, 
and the "gripping-clamp" projecting from a "dumm}'" in 
front of the car, seizes or releases the rope at the will of the 
attendant or driver. The brakes that are used on these cars 
ftct directly on the rail, stopping the car instantly, as soon as 
released from the rope. 

The principle emploj'^ed is not new, as it has frequently been 
used in mountainous regions as a means of transjiortation. 
The application, however, to street railroads was an untried 


experiment, but lias proven successful both in its practical 
working and financial returns. 

Mr. A. S. Hallidie, jDresident of the Mechanics' Institute, is 
the patentee of various devices, it was necessaiy to employ, in 
adapting the plan to the street railway, and to him is due the 
success of the experiment. 

Recently, by a combination of the managers, the rate of fare 
on all the horse railroads was advanced from five, to six and a 
quarter cents a ride, or ten cents for a single fare — the wire- 
rope road alone, adhering to the small rate. This action very 
naturally raised much public comiDlaint, and the result is that 
an oj^position company has organized. This will be known as 
the Chariot Street Eailroad Company, and the wire-rope sys- 
tem, as employed by the Clay-street Hill Company will be 
adopted, — dispensing almost entirely with the service of horses. 
The maximum rate of fare to be charged by the new company 
is five cents, 


Corporations, generally are said to be " soulless," and as 
Street Railway Companies are, as a rule, incorporated socie- 
ties, the natural conclusion would follow, that they are unsym- 
pathetic, as well as soulless institutions. This conclusion has 
some foundation in fact. 

There is, perhaps, no class of intelligent laborers subjected 
to more continual abuse, both from their employers and the 
public, than the employees of the Street Eailroad Companies, 
The drivers and conductors are the more unfortunate victims. 
They work under the most rigid rules. A penalty or fine is 
attached to th^ most trivial violation of any regulation. 

If they do not ran their cars up to " time," they are railed at, 
and sometimes violently abused by the timekeeper, who in turn 
is a subject of condemnation if he fails to do his prescribed duty; 
and if, in their haste to make up lost time, a leisurely gentle- 
man's graceful beckoning for the car to halt, is not recognized, 
an " outraged citizen " must needs vent his spleen upon the 
unfortunate driver and conductor, through the columns of the 
public press. They are insulted and cursed by every person 
who feels that his dignity is not respected, if the car starts 
before he is seated, or does not stop the exact moment he 
jerks the bell strap. They are constantly under the ban 
of, in many cases, unjust suspicion; and numerous crafty 


tricks are practised upon them to expose their supposed dis- 

They are compelled to remain on duty, from fifteen to' 
eighteen hours a day, and are allowed only twenty to thirty 
minutes for dinner and supper; and for all this they receive the 
paltry sum of two and one half dollars. Lost time is also 
always deducted. A cruel and barbarous rule prevails with all 
street railways, that of compelling both conductor and driver 
to stand while on duty — even the privilege of reclining against 
the dash-board being a forbidden luxury. 

The conductor is the " standing" fraud of the directors, and 
various ingenious stratagems are employed, to detect him in 
his loeculations. A spy, in the person of a beautiful and fash- 
ionably dressed lady, boards the car and when the unsuspect- 
ing conductor requests her fare, he is blandly informed in the 
sweetest tones, that she had already paid the requisite amount. 
To dispute this information from such a source would certainly 
be a breach of gallantry, unpardonable under any circumstan- 
ces, so he accejDts the lady's statement as correct, and the next 
morning finds that his place is vacant, or filled by another. 

Where tickets are sold, there is little oj^portunity for the 
conductor to embezzle any of the jDroceeds, as he is accounta- 
ble to the office for the tickets or their value. The tickets, 
however, are in coupon form, four or five being printed on the 
same card; and hence, single tickets are not sold. Single fares, 
therefore, are the indisiDutable property of the conductor, if he 
so wills it; and it is possibly true that the low wages, bad 
treatment, and long hours that are his portion, stand out in 
his mind as an argument favoring and justifying the appropri- 
ation to his own benefit, of all such small change. 


Does not San Francisco need a Bergh? There is main- 
tained in the city a society whose ostensible object is, to pre- 
vent cruelly lo animals; but what protection is extended to the 
dumb-brute race by this humane organization is enigmatical. 
It is possible that the "rags, sacks and bottles" man has 
transcended his limit of authority over the unfortunate ' ' plug " 
that labors before his rickety vehicle, and has felt the humane 
lash of this society on his thinly-covered back, to the tune of 
an extortionate fine; but among the abused animals of the 
corporations its sympathetic influence has not been felt. 


The street railway companies of San Francisco are heartless 
in the treatment of their horses. There are some exceptions, 
however; some companies whose horses show by their appear- 
ance that they are kindly treated and well cared for. But there 
is no place where this "noblest of animals" has harder task- 
masters, is more certainly worked to death, and has less sympa- 
thetic treatment, than in the service of the street railway 
companies of San Francisco. They make capital of his nn- 
comjDlaining docility. Cars, the weight of which alone are 
sufficient loads for the thin, trembling animals that draw them, 
are jammed and crammed with passengers. With oft-repeated 
reminders from the driver (who really has a tender feeling for 
his team, and would fain befriend them), the willing brutes 
exert their utmost strength, and stumbling and staggering 
over the cruel cobble-stone pave, or straining and surging for 
a firm foothold on the slippery road, they plod along as best 
they may, hour after hour, until from sheer inability to pro- 
ceed they are relieved from duty. 

The public observes and silently condemns. The press, as 
a matter of news, gives space for the recitation of any par- 
ticular instance of open and extreme cruelty; and the "So- 
ciety for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals," whose duty it is 
to remedy such abuses, remains conspicuously indifferent. 






DRUNKENNESS in San Francisco is not as common as in 
most cities of its size and population. Even the country 
villages in the Middle and Western States have a much larger 
number of confirmed diTinkards, jDroportionately, than San 
Francisco. This comparison, however, does not continue true 
when we substitute for the word "drunkenness," the milder 
term, "tipj)ling." 

The climate is opj)osed to drunkenness, and it also has an 
apparently contradictory effect, for it invites and encourages 
drinking. It urges the taking of the jDoison, so as to show its 
superior antidotal qualities. Many men drink to excess of 
intoxicating liquors, without any aj)parent evil effects result- 
ing, and a moderate drinker takes his regular "dram," firmly 
believing that without it he could not long exist, while wdth it, 
he may count upon living much longer, and accomplishing 
greater things than he who "looks not upon the wine when it 
is red," nor lifts the bowl to his lips. 

According to Dr. McKinley's statistics, three-sevenths of the 
adult male population of the United States never drink any 
intoxicating liquors, and nearly half of the four-sevenths who 
drink, do so to excess. These figures are certainly alarming, 
but were it possible to state the exact number of those who 
drink, in San Francisco, the information would be shocking — 
even to San Franciscans themselves. A roundabout way of 
telling it might lessen the enormity; so we will limit the num- 
ber of those who drink, to the number of those who, at one 
time or another, deal in mining stocks. By saying this, we 
do not mean to intimate that only those who drink deal in 
stocks, nor vice versa; for there are as many who don't deal in 


stocks, but drink, as there are who don't drink, but deal in 
stocks. When it is understood that the aggregate amount of 
the stock transactions at the different Stock Boards for a year, 
is over two hundred and twenty million dollars; that the reve- 
nue to the city from the license fees of retail liquor dealers, 
amounts to one hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars annu- 
ally, and that the poiDulation of San Francisco is about three 
hundred thousand (including forty or fifty thousand Chinese 
who do not drink), any person of a mathematical turn can soon 
settle the matter satisfactorily to himself, as to who drink, as 
well as who deal in mining stocks. 

The school-boy, in his essay on "Local Option in San Fran- 
cisco," explained the state of affairs, perhaps better than we 
can, thus: " Temperance societies are not very popular organ- 
izations in San Francisco. They interfere too much with busi- 
ness. There is lots of money made in San Francisco by 
saloons. If it wasn't for our j^apa's selling beer and whiskey 
along with other groceries, quite a number of us boys couldn't 
dress as good as we do, and get money to buy cigarettes — 
and I know several girls too who'd have to wear commoner 
clothes, only for that. But then there's two boys I know who 
have to wear ragged clothes and work, and have to smoke old 
cigar stumps, just because there are saloons in town where 
their fathers spend all the money they make for whiskey. I 
tell you I don't see through it; Local Option is a pretty hard 
subject to write about. I went down to see the License Col- 
lector, and he told me there was over two thousand saloons in 
San Francisco. That seems like a good many for a place of 
this size. That's all I can think of now, except that I don't 
think I'll ever drink." 

It is very possible that many of the sudden deaths that occur 
in San Francisco are simply the result of excessive indulgence 
in intoxicating drinks. The bracing climate may sustain a 
strong constitution for a long time against the destructive influ- 
ence of strong drinks, but sooner or later the vital organs 
"become affected, and the system no longer responds to the 
recuperative power of the atmosphere; then its restorative 
qualities only hasten a dissolution. 


San Francisco has never been without numerous real magni- 
ficent saloons — since the days of '49. In this, as in everything 


else, slie has " Excelsior " for lier watchword. There are as 
much artistic talent and skill demanded in arranging the in- 
terior of the first-class saloons, as are required for the drawing 
rooms in the palatial residences of the wealthy citizens. The 
embellishments of these are not tinsel, but are real and sub- 
stantial — the production of skillful hands. In the bar-rooms, 
there are large plate glass mirrors, alternating with fine paint- 
ings in the panels of the walls. There are exquisitely chiseled 
vases, always containing brilliant and fragrant bouquets of 
flowers. There are statuettes, and ornamental carving; there 
are silver and cut glass goblets; there are counters and tables 
of the finest marble, carved in artistic designs and smoothly 
polished; the floors are formed of marble tiles, the ceilings 
finely frescoed, and the windows are of heavy plate glass, orna- 
mented with graceful designs, and the light swinging doors 
are covered in elegant style and upon the outer side is a silver 
door-plate with the name of the proprietor or saloon engraved 
thereon. Everything is costly and elegant, and although the 
drug that has been death to many is there dispensed in its 
fiery purity, there is an air of refinement about the room, a 
gentlemanly courtesy in the attendants, that is not only at- 
tractive, but to the mind, counteracts the debasing influence 
of intemperance. The private rooms are richly furnished, qmet 
and retired. There is seldom any disorderly conduct in these 
saloons. Those who keep them are gentlemen, and they re- 
quire their patrons to conduct themselves in a manner becom- 
ing gentlemen. 

The finest saloons, are in the locality of the different cham- 
bers of the boards of brokers. Their patrons are mostly men of 
wealth, who are speculators in stocks, stock-brokers, bankers, 
and the leading members of the bar. The excitement attend- 
these pursuits in San Francisco, is intense, and much stimu- 
lating drink is necessary, to enable the body to bear up under 
the constant strain. If the stock operator makes a successful 
deal, he must soothe his agitated nerves, and resjDond to the 
congratulation of his friends, by taking a social glass; if he is 
a loser, he must revive his depressed spirits by a deep draught. 
Eveiything seems to have conspired to urge men to drink. 


One of the chief inducements held out by the saloon keepers 
to win patronage, is the lunch system they have adopted. No- 


Tvliere but in San Francisco, is there such temptation for every- 
body to drink. When a hungry man can procure a drink of 
anything he likes, and a lunch, which for variety and style of 
serving is superior to that set at his own home, or at the first- 
class hotels and restaurants, for the small sum of " two bits," 
unless his resolutions against patronizing the liquor sellers, are 
very firm, he Avill not hesitate to enter a saloon and satisfy his 
hunger. Hot-lunches are served free, at all the first-class 
saloons, every day between the hours of 11 a. m. and 2 p. m. 
One price is charged for every kind of drink; common, 
" straight," or fancy — whether it be soda, seltzer water, lem- 
onade, beer, whiskey or wine — for cigars, cigarettes and to- 
bacco; and he who lays down his "two bits," can have his 
choice and besides, eat his fill of a steaming savory lunch. 

A bill-of-fare for lunch at the " Pantheon," conducted by 
Mr. J. "Wainright, at 321 California Street, the finest saloon 
in the city — is as follows: "Turtle soup; roast pig; roast 
lamb; sheep's tongue, stewed; stewed liver; fish balls; salmon, 
broiled whole; potatoes, tomatoes, cheese, crackers, nick- 
nacks, and all accessory relishes." 

This is varied daily. Every delicacy, whether of fruits, vege- 
tables, meats, fowl or fish, is served in its season. A large 
table is spread at the side or end of the room, and no formality, 
whatever, is observed at eating. Each person after taking his 
drink or cigar, goes to the table and is immediately served 
with whatever he chooses. All eat standing, and it is not a 
rare occurrence to see millionaires walking about the room, or 
leaning against the bar in eager converse — each with a chicken 
drumstick or wing in one hand, a slice of bread and cheese 
in the other, like country school-boys at noontime. 

At the "bit" saloons, lunches are also served. The one 
price system prevails with these. The only difference in the 
lunch at these and the first class saloons is, that one "bit" 
cannot supply as great a variety as "two bits" — the style of 
serving is the same, and there is an abundance of what is 
offered. A man need not go hungry so long as he has a ten 
cent piece about him. Even in the "five-cent" saloons, where 
beer is the standard beverage, and where the Germans mostly 
congregate for a smoke, chat and drink, and a few chips of 
"bologna," there is always a plate of cheese, some di'ied beef, 
crackers, pickles, mustard and sausage — and here, everything 
i^five cents. 


There is not a single first class hotel in San Francisco but 
has a bar where liquors are sold. This branch of the business, 
however, is generally conducted separately from the hotel, 
being under different management, but in close j^roximity to 
the hotel offices and gentlemen's parlors. Most of these bar- 
rooms are elegantly fitted up, and rank as first class saloons. 
Even in these, notwithstanding the nearness of the hotel din- 
ing rooms, there is usually some "tit-bits," or relishes, to be 
found on the lunch table. 

Each saloon has its particular patrons, besides many tran- 
sient callers. At the "Pantheon," California Street, bank 
officials, capitalists, commission merchants, insurance officials, 
etc., take lunch; the favorite resorts of the brokers, brokers* 
clerks, bookkeepers, etc., are Louis Eppinger's, corner Hal- 
leck and Leidesdorff, and Collins's, at the corner of Montgom- 
ery and California; while Oscar Lewis, on Sutter Street, caters 
to the sporting men. "Frank's," on Montgomery Street, is 
patronized by judges and lawyers, as is the Parker House, 
also. Of the two last named, the "hashes" and stews of the 
one, and the beans baked with green pepper — Mexican style — 
of the other, are justly celebrated. 

Collins's, at the corner of Montgomery and California, does 
the most extensive bar business in the city. He emjjloj^s six 
bar-tenders, from six a. m., to eight p. m., who are kept busy 
constantly, in serving the many thirsty customers. 


One, and sometimes two, of eveiy four corners formed by 
the streets crossing each other, throughout the city, even in the 
remote suburbs, is generally occupied by a corner grocery. In 
this establishment are kept for sale a great variety of family 
groceries — not necessarily much of any one thing, but a little 
of many kinds of family supj)lies, so as to meet the contingent 
Avants of the residents in the surrounding blocks. Of the 
whole number of these in the city, it would be difficult to find 
one but has a bar, at which all kinds of common liquors are sold. 
This is generally placed in the rear of the store, shielded from 
view by a board jjartition, and having two entrances, one 
through the store and another at the rear, the door of which 
is used as a sign-board, and bears the suggestive words : "Sam- 


Of evenings, these corner grocery bar-rooms are largely pat- 
ronized as "loafing-places," by the mechanics, laborers and 
idlers, whose homes are in the neighborhood. A simple lunch 
is set out here, and also a card table is provided. Here young 
men and middle-aged men, boys and grey beards congregate 
at night, to talk vulgar slang, play cards for "the drinks," and 
smoke and chew — to go home at a late hour with heavy heads 
and light purses. It is at these places that the youthful San. 
Franciscan Hoodlums are developed. 

These corner groceries are admirable conveniences for bef ore- 
breakfast drams, not only for the common laborers and me- 
chanics, who seldom see inside of the palatial saloons, ' ' down 
town," but for the brokers, bankers, capitalists, etc., who have 
families, but reside too far out to visit their favorite drinking 
saloons so early in the day. True, there are many of these 
who keep full supplies of favorite beverages, in their private 
cellars, but some of them have members in their families whom 
they do not wish to have imitate their example, and hence they 
slip around to the corner grocery for their morning appetizer. 

Considering the many temptations that are placed in his way, 
it is not strange that the San Francisco youth should become 
dissipated in his teens, and therefore be vicious and unmanage- 
able ; but it is strange that these temptations should be per- 
mitted to exist in such great numbers. 

There is no disgrace attached to visiting saloons. Yery few 
persons in San Francisco would hesitate to enter a saloon for 
a drink, even though they knew that their brothers and sisters 
in the church — and the minister also — were watching them. 
Everybody knows that everybody drinks, if they want to, and 
they are not shocked if they see them in the act, or are advised 
of the fact by others. Time only can make known the result 
of this kind of a life. It is natural to predict that it will tell 
disastrously on the coming generation — yet we can only wait 
and see. 








DID the "power of the press" consist in the number of 
public journals and periodicals that are regularly issued, 
San Francisco would f)resent a most formidable front. What- 
ever principle, party or person it should attack, would do well 
to surrender at once, as the numerical force that could be mar- 
shaled out is sufficient to overcome and crush anything antago- 
nistic, however powerful, unless perchance it should be a rail- 
road coriDoration or Chinese immigration. 

There are eighty distinct j)eriodicals thrown out to the pub- 
lic, at intervals — some quarterly and monthly, but the greater 
number issuing daily and weekly. These all are (or at least 
profess to be) jDublished in the interest of humanity, each hav- 
ing a particular object in view aside from the great general aim 
of money-getting. It is furthermore true that each of these 
periodicals claims to labor, in its own especial and peculiar way, 
for the betterment of mankind in general and the inhabitants of 
San Francisco and California in jDarticular. 

It would therefore follow, as a natural sequence, that the 
individuals composing the community in which these publica- 
tions most do circulate, would be, and are, the nearest ap- 
proach to perfect intelligent mortals that claim a habitation 
on this terrestrial sphere. However desirable that condition 
may be, it is evident from the volume wherein you now read 
that, with all the advantages pointing to moral, intellectual, 
physical, and social perfection, San Franciscans are still 
■" prone to err." 

Yet San Francisco is not too boastful of her public joui'nals. 
The hight she has attained as a city, commercially and socially. 


she has also reached intellectually. The press has been the 
leader, is yet in advance, and to it is due the unparalleled 
progress San Francisco and California have made in the past 
quarter of a century. The history of journalism on the Pa- 
cific Coast, although extending over so brief a period, would 
aboimd in interesting and exciting narrative, and w^ould reveal 
the fact that the standard of excellence it has reached has been 
literally through fire and tribulation. 

But these very circumstances have tended to develop the 
real legitimate journalistic pursuit, and therefore when, by 
accident or otherwise, unfit persons have drifted into the chan- 
nel, the current of public sentiment has generally washed them 
upon the rocks, and they have disappeared from view. 

The West has developed independent journalism. There is 
manifest in the abler Western newspapers a blunt boldness, 
not hampered by palliative phrases, that is discovered in but 
few Eastern journals. Any new country, possessing similar 
attractions to California, is, in its earlier history, overrun by a 
desperate and dangerous class of adventurers ; and hence, in 
the West, it required not only literary ability to establish a 
newspaper that would exert a power for the good of the coun- 
try and society, but courageous hearts withal. 

Thus it is that the very nature of the circumstances through 
"which Western journalism has grown up, compelled an inde- 
pendent course that — though, perhaps, in its crudeness, was 
audacious and insolent — has developed into a power, the proper 
exercise of which is the true mission of the newspaper in these 
latter years of the nineteenth century. 

The California public look upon the press as a power, whose 
strength it were better not to test; with a sort of reverential 
awe. To this fact, is possibly due, the restrictions that have 
been attempted to be placed upon it — by the recent State 
Legislature. It is difficult to understand why this feeling 
should obtain among the people — especially those whose lives, 
hitherto, have been as they should, free from tarnish, upright 
and honorable. 

It has been observed, however, that when the secular jour- 
nals have exposed any great evil, whether of a social, business, 
or official nature, and earnestly agitated the subject, they have 
almost universally succeeded in ujorooting it, and have guided 
the hand of justice to deal the merited blow upon the perpe- 


trators. When the city of San Francisco had become as a 
house of refuge to criminals of all classes, and dishonesty and 
vice knew no limit beyond which they could not Avith impu- 
nity pass, it was the press, that awakened the dormant princi- 
ple of right, and aroused the people to action. The press 
urged them onward, until they had purged the city of its most 
vicious inhabitants. 

Only let one of the standard San Francisco journals express 
distmst in the financial condition of a banking house, or promi- 
nent business firm, and the impulsive populace at once sees 
impending, a financial stringency that cannot but result in 
great disaster; and ten times in twelve it will, by its hasty 
action, precipitate a real j^anic. A reverse feeling will 
be induced by the press coming out strongly in favor of an in- 
stitution, that may be tottering from its own weight, so that 
the slightest disturbance would cause it to fall; a few well- 
timed editorials, based upon reason and expressing confidence, 
sets the public mind at rest, and the chasm may be bridged. 

Yet in the face of this dreaded power and independence, 
wealthy corporations have grown thrifty, and, to-day, threaten 
to rise in their strength and dictate to the masses what they 
shall or shall not do. There has been no country more pro- 
lific of monopolies than California, and unless they are held in 
check by legislation, the oppression that results from their ty- 
rannical power when given unbridled sway, will become intol- 
erable. The spirit of communism, that is occasionally mani- 
fest among the laboring classes, is enkindled and fed by the 
blighting influence the monopolies exert, and will develop into 
a power that will, by sheer force, establish an equihbrium, 
even though a period of anarchy should result, unless some pro- 
tection be extended to the working-men. 

The press of California, has therefore much to contend with. 
It is essential, then, that the leading journals possess and 
maintain a true independence, such as gold will not neutralize 
nor influence bend, for the masses accep»t them as leaders, and 
have faith that they will lead aright. 

In San Francisco, there are twenty periodicals, published in 
different foreign languages, which, more certainly indicate 
the extent of the foreign population, than anything short of 
an actual enumeration. The whole number of daily paj)ers is 
twelve, and of dailies and weeklies together there are fifty- 



The Alta has the honor of being the oldest journal in Cali- 
fornia; and being such, the peojDle and its proprietors, have 
apparently united in the purpose of making it a true repre- 
sentative of the State in which it had its origin. A history of 
this journal, from its inception to the present time, appeared 
in the March number of The Besources of California, 1876, ex- 
tracts from which, are here given: 

" The Press in California, has been, as elsewhere, one of its 
first institutions after the acquisition. On the fifteenth of Au- 
gust, 1846, "Walter Colton and Robert Semple issued, at Mon- 
terey, the first number of the CaUfornian, the first newspaper 
published in California. It Avas issued weekly up to the thirty- 
eighth number, w^hich was printed May 6th, 1817, w^hen it was 
moved to San Francisco, then called Yerba Buena, and its 
next number issued May 22d, 1847 . Meanwhile San Francisco 
had followed the examj^le of Monterey. On the ninth of Jan- 
uarj^, 1847, the first number of the California Star w'as issued, 
Samuel Brannan, publisher; E. P. Jones, editor. It was a 
weekly journal of twelve columns. On the twenty-ninth of 
May, the CaUfornian, in a fly-sheet, apologized for the future 
non-issue of that journal until better days should come. Every 
'sub' and the 'devil' himself had gone to the 'diggings,' 
rejecting every offer and effort to retain them. On the four- 
teenth of June, the California Star likewise ceased. 

' ' The CaUfornian revived on the fifteenth of July. By the 
eighteenth of November, 1848, the proprietors of the California 
Star had bought up the CaUfornian, and uniting the two under 
one proprietorship, issued on that day a new paper, a 
virtual combination of the two, under the name of the 
Star and CaUfornian, the California Star having ceased its 
publication five months previously. The issues of this jour- 
nal continued until the fourth of January, 1849, when the 
Star and CaUfornian, as a designation for the journal, was dis- 
carded and that of Alta California adopted as its future name. 
Mr. Edward C. Kemble had previously become the owner of 
the Star and CaUfornian, and having taken in as a partner Mr. 
Edward Gilbert, the paper, under its present title, was issued. 
The journal continued and prospered. It grew with the 
growth of the town, and flourished as the population and busi- 
ness of the town and State increased. 


" On the fourteenth of December, a tri-weekly edition of the 
Alta California was issued, previous, to which it had been only 
a weekly issue. That was continued also. On the twenty- 
second of January, 1849, the Alia California newsj^aper ap- 
peared as a daily journal — subscription price $25 per year — 
and has made its regular appearance ever since. Meanwhile, 
Messrs. Durivage & Connor had become proprietors in the 
paper, and joartners of Messrs. Gilbert and Kemble. Mr. 
Connor had brought with him from New York a steam engine, 
and thus the journal was put in condition to work off editions 
of its issues sufficient to supply all demands. Mr. Gilbert hav- 
ing been elected as one of the two first Congressional Repre- 
sentatives of the State in Congress, had left for Washington, 
leaving Mr. Kemble, assisted by Mr. Durivage, to conduct it. 
About the close of August, Mr. Kemble concluded to visit his 
old home in the State of New York, he having been absent for 
some years. With this resolution fixed, he offered the editorial 
chair to Frank Soule, who had written some few articles for 
the paper, and who accepted and continued in this capacity 
during Mr. Kemble's absence. 

"Messrs, Kemble and Gilbert had reached San Francisco 
but a few days, had not yei assumed editorial duties, when the 
great fire of June 22d, 'the sixth great fire,' occurred. It 
commenced a little before eleven o'clock Sunday morning, 
while the people were on their way to church, and the church 
bells were ringing, soon to be changed into fire alarm warn- 
ings. Ten entire squares were consumed, and, with the rest, 
that on which the business and press-rooms of the Alta were 
situated, sweeping that journal, with all its fixtures, tyj^e, 
presses, accounts, buildings, everything, away. At the pre- 
vious fire, on the fourth of May, every other newspaper office 
had been destroyed, and now had come the Alta's turn. On 
the jDresent occasion, the Alta California was the only one 
burned out. Fortune or Fate seemed to carry itself with 
most wonderful impartiality. 

"A new office-lot was secured, the building on the corner of 
Washington Street and Brenham Place was erected, and for 
some years, the j^aper was issued from it. Its previous office 
had been on the north side of Washington Street, nearly oppo- 
site the middle of Portsmouth Square. In those days, Cali- 
fornia was well sprinkled with hot-blooded men from the South, 


•who believed in duelling, and were ready to resort to it for 
the settlement of difficulties of a personal nature. And there 
were those, also, from the North, who were ready to answer 
calls to the field, or to give them. Mr. Gilbert was one of the 
latter. Some strictures of his upon certain acts of the State 
Government, led to a misunderstanding- with Gen. Denver. A 
challenge was sent by Mr. Gilbert — was accepted — a meeting' 
took place near Sacramento, and at the second fire Mr. Gilbert 
was killed. Thus fell a kind, genial, intelligent gentleman, a 
sacrifice to his high sense of personal honor and the barba- 
rous code. 

"Other journals had sprung into life in the city, some with 
an ephemeral, and others with a somewhat longer existence. 
The Pacific News, the second paper in the city, at the time, 
was issued first, August 27, 1849, published bj Messrs. Falk- 
ner and Leland, and continued until in one of the Great Fires 
of 1851, it expired in a blast of flame. Of the score of jour- 
nals in those early days, none, except the Alta, exists. It 
passed through many changes, and into the hands of various 
proprietors, with but indifferent success, until a three-fourth 
interest in it was purchased by and passed into the hands 
of Mr. Frederick MacCrellish, in whose possession, in com- 
pany with Mr. Wm. A. Woodward, it has ever since remained, 

"Soon after this last change of jjroprietorship, came the ex- 
citements leading to the organization of the Vigilance Com- 
mittee, called into existence by the unbridled license and 
rascality of a portion of the people, and which the authorities 
and courts had failed properly to restrain and punish; and on 
that occasion, when the city was like a seething volcano, excited 
by a murderous attack upon Mr. James King of William, the 
Alta struck the chord which vibrated in unison with public 
sentiment, and its fortunes were at once assured. 

"It has never been sensational, seldom personal, but always 
a journal which the parent, of however scrupulous taste, could 
risk putting into the hands of wife or daughter, assured that 
nothing therein could offend them. Its proprietors have thrown 
the influence of their journal in favor of progress and civili- 
zation. Improvements in receiving and transmitting news they 
may justly claim as having been among the first and most libe- 
ral in inaugurating. They chiefly induced the organization of 
the celebrated 'Pony Express,' paying $1,000 per month for 


its supjDort. The first telegraph o-\Yed, if not its conception, 
at least its construction towards the Southern end of the State, 
to meet the overland stage, to the AUa's proi^rietors." 

Mr. Frank Soule is yet to be found in the editorial rooms of 
the Alta, and although he has grown grey in the service of 
•"California's veteran journal," like that journal, he yet retains 
a youthful vigor, which age has only matured. 

In politics, the Alia is republican; yet its interest in party is 
not manifest in passionate appeals or bitter invectives. 


In the later part of 1855, immediately following the finan- 
cial crash of that j^ear, tliat proved so disatrous to San Fran- 
cisco, James King of William associated in business with Mr. 
C. O. Gerberding, and they began the j)ublication of the 
evening Bulletin, Mr. Gerberding Avas an accomplished book- 
keeper, a man of excellent personal address, though possess- 
ing small means. Mr. King had just emerged from the wreck 
of his banking house, a bankrupt, yet possessing what is of 
more value than money — sound principles and sterling sense. 
Neither of these gentlemen were journalists, but both were 
well acquainted with the corrupt practices of the city officials, 
and knew the necessity of official and social reform. Mr. 
E^ing assumed editorial control, and to Mr. Gerberding was 
assigned the business management of the paper. A certain 
interest was transferred to Messrs. Whitton, Towne & Co., 
23rinters, in consideration of which they were to do the printing. 

Mr. King, in his editorials, at once attacked the vicious and 
criminal classes, not recognizing the shield of wealth or posi- 
tion that many of them interposed, but exposing all manner 
of rascality and villainy, no matter what the rank or circum- 
stances of the guilty. This excited resentful feelings in the 
evil-doers and their sympathizers, but called forth words of 
encouragement and ofi'ers of aid from those who were disposed 
to give honesty and integrity the preference. 

It is wonderful how stinging and ^penetrating were Mr. 
King's satirical attacks! His inexperience as a writer was 
manifest in every article he wrote, but his words were blunt 
and to the point, and it was this very simplicity — his "street- 
talk style" — that sent the arrow so directly to the mark. 

Wrought up to an ecstacy of rage, by an attack uj)on his 


character by Mr. King, one Casey, an ex-convict of Sing Sing, 
who, by ballot-box stuffing and briber}^ had been placed in 
the board of supervisors, — shot Mr. King down in the street, 
from the effect of which he died in a few days. 

This was the immediate cause of the forming of the Vigil- 
ance Committee of '56. During their rule, the Bidletin advo- 
cated a moderate course, and although it was commended for 
this by the cool and law-loving citizens, it did not receive the 
hearty support that was given to another journal (the Alta) 
that unreservedly urged and supported the action of the Vigi- 

Mr. Thos. S. King, a brother of James, who had rendered 
him much financial assistance during his editorship, next took 
editorial charge, and the Bulletin continued prospering. Not 
long afterwards, Mr. J. "W. Simonton secured a half interest 
in the journal, and in 1859, Mr. Gerberding sold half of his 
interest to Mr. G. K. Fitch, at which time, also, a two-six- 
teenth interest was transfen-ed to each of three old and faith- 
ful employees — Mr. James Nesbit, Dr. F. Tuthill, and Julian 
Bartlett, — Mr. Thos. S. King in the meantime retiring. 

In 1861, Mr. Gerberding's bad health caused him to sell 
out, the remaining j)artners becoming purchasers. Following 
shortly, Mr. Loring Pickering bought an interest of Mr. Fitch, 
and in 1869, seven years later, three of the partners — Messrs. 
Nesbit, Tuthill, and Bartlett — having been removed by death, 
the firm was composed of Messrs. Simonton, Fitch, and Pick- 
ering, their interests equalized; and the proprietorship of the 
Bulletin has continued thus to the present time. 

In politics, the Bulletin claims to be independent, though it 
evidently inclines to the republican party. It has the largest 
circulation of the evening newspapers. Its editorial corps is 
very able, numbering on its staff, journalists whose literary 
attainments have given them some favorable recognition. The 
resident proprietors, Messrs. Fitch and Pickering, give per- 
sonal direction in the editorial departments. 

The indignation excited at the course of the Bulletin, just 
previous to and during the suspension of the Bank of Cali- 
fornia, in August, 1875, which was also immediately preceding 
the general State election — resulted in the temporary with- 
drawal of patronage from it, amounting in the aggregate to 
some five hundred regular subscribers, and two and a half 



columns of advertising. The cause of public displeasure at 
that time was the editorial articles that appeared in the Bulletin 
reflecting disci'edit upon the character of Wm. C. Ralston, the 
bank's president, for whom the people entertained an almost 
reverential devotion because of the generous aid he had from 
time to time extended to various enterprises, both public and 

There is little doubt but that injustice was done him by this 
journal, and had the future fate of Mr. Ealston been fore- 
shadowed, it is probable that the attack wovdd not have been 
made. It is, however, more reasonable to attribute this action 
to a too strong desire to eftect certain political results than to 
gratify a feeling of malice or personal dislike. 

IVIr. Fitch, who is perhaps the master mind on the Bulletin, 
is a printer and journalist by "birth" and profession; having 
been engaged in various capacities in newspaper and printing 
offices from early boyhood. In 1848, he was engaged in a 
small way in a job printing office in New Orleans. But when 
time recorded those magic numbers, " '49," he was seized with 
the prevailing epidemic, sold out his interest for one thousand 
dollars, and started for California. 

However, before leaving, he purchased the type, press, 
forms, leads, rules, sticks, and other aj^j^aratus so necessary 
in a newspaper office, and shipped them for the same destina- 
tion. He even bought an ample supply of glue to use in 
making rollers, and also a quantity of printing paper — 
thinking, very correctly, too, that such commodities would 
not be found among the luggage of those whose only ambition 
was to search for gold. As a sort of recreation, and prompted, 
no doubt, by a speculative notion, he tarried for a few weeks 
at Panama, during which brief time he published the Panama 

Disposing of this for a profit of one hundred and fifty dol- 
lars, he continued his journey to California. 

In March, 1850, he started the Sacramento Transcript, at 
Sacramento. This he conducted for two years, when it was 
merged into the Times and Transcript, and removed to San 
Francisco. Meantime, Mr. Pickering, a journalist from St. 
Louis, had joined him in the enterprise. The latter publica- 
tion was continued two years, under their management, after 
which their attention was directed to the Bulletin. 


During the Bulletin's career there have been some very 
worthy and talented j)ersons connected with it. Three of the 
gentlemen previously mentioned in this sketch, Messrs. Nesbit, 
Tuthill, and Julian Bartlett, are spoken of as persons of great 
worth, iDOSsessing most excellent qualities, and endowed with 
more than ordinary literary ability. Mr. Tuthill left behind 
him a history of California, which, considering his inexperi- 
ence in historical writing, and also the fact that his was a 
pioneer work, bears evidence that under more favorable cir- 
cumstances he would have attained an enviable reiDutation as 
an historian. As it is, he has done much to remove the rub- 
bish that historical writers have to go through, and has gath- 
ered the material from which those who come after may build 
up a lasting superstructure. 

Mr. Ben. P. Avery, whose recent death brought sorrow to 
so many hearts, served long and well in an editorial cajsacity 
on the Bvlletin. Messrs. William Bartlett and Samuel Wil- 
liams, both of whose writings have been admired by the 
public, have been engaged on the Bulletin for the last ten 

The Call is a live morning daily, owned and conducted by 
the proprietors of the Bulletin. The first number of the Call 
appeared December 1, 1856, under the management of the 
"Associated Practical Printers." It gradually grew in size 
and public favor, and in 1869 was transferred to the projorie- 
torship of a Mr. Foster. Shortly after this time, Mr. Foster 
died, and the paper was continued under the control of its 
present proprietors. 

The Call is probably the most profitable daily on the Pacific 
Coast. It is very popular with the masses, and is much patron- 
ized by small advertisers. Column after column of short 
notices, under the various classifications of "Help Wanted," 
"Situations Wanted," "Rooms to Let," "Personals," "Lost," 
"Found," "Business Opportunities," appear from day to day, 
as well as many larger and display advertisements. Its local 
news items are generally lengthened out to a degree that suits 
the morbid imaginations of its readers, and have a smack of 
sensation, that tends to sate the hungry cravings of the 
masses. The editorials are up to the par standard, and thus 
it compensates its thinking readers for the annoyance that the 
light paragraphs and "breezy" sketches might occasion them. 
It claims a circulation of 31,000. In politics, it is independent. 



The daily eyening Examiner is the legitimate offspring of the 
Democratic Press, which was started October 20, 1863, and 
suspended in 1865. The first number of the Examiner was 
issued June 12, 1865, William S. Moss, publisher, and B. F. 
"Washington, editor. 

The Examiner is the leading Democratic journal in the State, 
and is therefore well supported by its party constituents. It 
is characterized for the chasteness of its contents — nothing 
whatever of a sensational nature being permitted in its col- 
umns. For this reason (which alone ought to commend it to 
public favor and patronage), it is not much sought after by the 
public as a dispenser of local gossip; and hence its circulation 
is limited, when compared with some of the other leading 
daihes. Its proprietors are Wm. S. Moss, Hon. Phil. A. Eoach, 
and George Pen Johnston — the latter presiding over the edito- 
rial department. 

Mr. Roach has attained considerable local celebrity by reason 
of his rollicking good humor and innocent pleasantries, which 
are perhaps intensified by the venerable appearance his pre- 
mature white locks fix upon him. He is the butt of many a 
society joke, because he has actually lived and moved among 
the San Francisco beau monde for so many years, without 
having either got married or lost his heart. He is a con- 
firmed bachelor, and at present represents the democracy of 
San Francisco in the State Legislature. 


Although but a little more than four years in existence, the 
PoHt ranks among the leading dailies in the city. It was intro- 
duced to the public on December 4th, 1871, under the proprie- 
torship of Messrs. Hinton, Rapp «& Co. , with Mr. Henry George, 
as editor. 

As an organ of the Democratic party, its career was marked 
by prosperity until 1872, when it was purchased by a Mr. 
Thompson, formerly of the Chicago Inter-Ocean and Cincin- 
nati Commercial, under whose management it languished. 
After a period of three months, it was transferred to Mr. Hin- 
ton, who succeeded in establishing it on a more stanch basis 
by forming a joint stock company, Mr. George again assuming 
editorial charge. 


This arrangement continued until December, 1875, when 
Hon. John P. Jones, having purchased a controlling interest 
in the stock, Messrs. George and Hinton were succeeded by 
Mr. J. T. Goodman, who took the management of both the 
editorial and business departments. 

The Post was first issued as a one cent paper, but the favor- 
able reception it met induced the pubhshers to enlarge its size, 
which also necessitated an increased price. It was therefore 
advanced to ten cents per week, but subsequent enlargements 
have increased the price to twelve and a half cents, at which 
rate it is now furnished to subscribers. 

The Post is the only journal on the coast that uses the Bul- 
lock press. The Hoe press was for a long time considered the 
"highest reach of mechanical skill," as applied to the art of 
printing ; but since the invention of the Bullock — the capacity 
of which is nearly double that of the Hoe — it has fallen into 
the second rank, and is fast becoming supplanted by the Bul- 
lock, in the larger newspaper establishments. The Bullock 
prints on both sides at once ; requires but one feeder, and is 
more economically operated. It is claimed that the Bullock 
can print as high a number as 30,000 an hour; but in practical 
service it averages about 15,000 copies. This press was pro- 
cured at a cost of $25,000. 

During the exciting times of the " Womens' Crusade" against 
whiskey and saloons — or, as it is more familiarly known in San 
Francisco, "Local OiDtion" — the Post was the only daily that 
earnestly espoused the cause of the "oppressed sex;" which 
action, though perhaps highly commendable, was proven to 
be unpopular in California. 

In matters of news, the Post is considered reliable. Its locals 
are often rather highly spiced — tending to sensational — but its 
leading editorials are earnest and pointed, and graceful in style. 
The editor in chief, Mr. Goodman, was for a considerable time 
connected with the Nevada Enterprise, and is the gentleman 
who first inducted Mark Twain into the mysteries of journal- 
ism. Twain, in his Roughing It, acknowledges the kindness 
with which his first efforts at reporting were received by Mr. 
Goodman, in his peculiarly amusing style. The managing edi- 
tors are S. Seabough and L. E. Crane. The Saturday evening 
edition of the Post is generally a double sheet, and might be 
called the literary issue of the paper — being devoted to light, 
interesting topics, containing also a story or two of some merit. 


Since Mr. Goodman took the management, the politics of the 
Post have undergone an abrupt change — it being now a thor- 
ough republican journal. 


The Stock Report, devoted more particularly to the mining 
stock transactions of California Street, was established in 1863, 
as a sort of weekly bulletin of the stock market. As the min- 
ing industry on the coast increased, an increase in stock trans- 
actions naturally followed, and it was found that a daily issue 
of the Stock Report was demanded. It is really a mining and 
broker's journal, and, as such, represents the most important 
industiy of the coast, as well as the greatest financial interests 
in San Francisco. Yet it has its departments devoted to gen- 
eral news, and in its editorials important topics are dis- 
cussed. It contains elaborate and instructive tables of stock 
sales, lists of assessments, dividends, and letters from the 
principal mines and mining districts on the coast. 

Mr. William Bunker, formerly on the Evening Bulletin, in 
1875, undertook its management, since which time it has ex- 
hibited marked improvement in all its de^Dartments. He, in 
connection with Mr. P. H. McGowan, have full control, and 
under their supervision the Stock Report will no doubt continue 
to be the representative organ of the great mining resources 
of the Pacific States, and the mining stock interests, of which 
it is the of&cial exponent. 



This is another daily stock paper, reliable in its quotations 
and tables relative to the mining stock market. It also gives 
a summary of important general news, and publishes the 
latest advices by telegraph and correspondents, from the vari- 
ous mines on the coast. It is, apparently, a profitable property, 
as it enjoys a good circulation, and its advertising columns are 
well patronized. 


The Figaro is a small theatrical sheet, published daily. It 
is more devoted to advertising than to giving theatrical news. 
It is distributed free at the theatres, and is only valuable as a 
programme of the plays. 



Of the dailies published in foreign languages, the German 
enjoy the most extended circulation. They are all, however, 
Avell made up, and confine themselves to the legitimate field of 

The Daily Demokrat, German, has a circulation of 5,000. It 
is published by Messrs Fr. Hess & Co. , who also publish a 
weekly sheet called the Staats Zeititng. These are independent 
in polities. 

The Abend Post, German, also indej^endent, has a circulation 
of 2,200, with a weekly edition of 1,700. D. Klintworth & 
Co. are the jDublishers. 

Courrier de San Francisco is the French publication, issued 
daily and weekly, with a respective circulation of 1,000 and 

La Voz de Nuevo Ificndo, Siaanish, has a circulation of 1,000, 
and is issued semi-weekly. 

The California Posten, a weekly Scandinavian journal, with 
a circulation of 950. 

The Italian weekly, La Voce del Popolo, has 2,500 circula- 

There is also a Spanish semi-weekly. La Sociedad, and a 
French weekly, La Petite Journal, devoted more particularly 
to society gossip than to general news. 


Besides the weekly editions issued from the leading daily 
ofi&ces, there are none devoted to politics and general news. 
A weekly paper now-a-days is issued only for the benefit of 
those who live in the country, too remote from the railroads 
and thickly populated districts to enjoy the benefits of the 
dailies; or in the interest of some special industry, as agri- 
culture and mining; the arts, sciences, and literature; or 
ojDinions and beliefs, none of which require that vigilant at- 
tention from the press as do business and political subjects. 

Among the commercial weekly journals, the Journal of Com- 
merce is the oldest. It is devoted to general commercial 
matters on the Coast, and has a larger circulation than any of 
its competitors. 

The weekly Stock Report circulates largely in the mining 
towns. It contains a resume of the stock transactions for the 


week, list of assessments, etc., and for this reason is valuable 
to those who deal in stocks. 

The Pacific Grocer was started as an anti-Grange paper. It 
has been published for about a year, and is no doubt of value 
to interior dealers. The market reports it contains are veiy 
complete, and its business editorials are instructive. 

There are two agricultural weeklies, the Pacific Rural Press 
and the California Farmer. The former has a cu-culation of 
8000, and is an invaluable journal to all engaged in any of 
the agricultural pursuits. It is ably edited, and each number 
contains some approj)riate illustrations. It is a practical Cali- 
fornia farm journal. The Farmer, although an old estab- 
lished publication, seems not to have kept pace with the agri- 
cultural development of the State. It is too much given to 
theorizing — a thing that the California farmer, of all others, 
dare not trust. 

The Mining and Scientific Press is modeled after the Scientific 
American of New York. In addition to scientific and me- 
chanical matters, to which the latter confines itself, the Press 
has the great mineral resources of the Pacific Coast to di'aw 
from, with the innumerable scientific experiments that are 
made in the process of developing them. It has a circulation 
of 4000. 

The Neivs Letter and California Advertiser is published weekly 
in a variety of interests, both negative and positive. It is at 
once the enemy and frieud of everybody; but, above all else, it 
heartily abominates "quackery," and under a motto of "skull 
and bones" keeps a standing list of all persons who represent 
themselves as physicians, but are unable to show their di- 
plomas. It is much patronized as an advertising medium, and 
is doubtless the most profitable advertising property in the 

San Francisco has been unfortunate in literary journals. 
The extra and Sunday editions of the large dailies are mostly 
devoted to literary matter, and it is therefore difiicult ta 
establish a weekly literary journal that can compete with 
them and be self-sustaining. The Golden Era has a precarious 
existence, though its title might suggest that its career was 
more independent. When the golden era in literature shall 
have come, and merit alone, in literaiy journals, shall sustain 
them, it is not improbable that the Golden Era will cease to 


Illustrated papers have also been unfortunate. Frequent 
attemj)ts have been made to establish them, but with little 

The Spirit of the Times and Underivriters' Journal — a paper 
devoted to insurance matters and sporting — is a vig-orous 
weekly, and frequently contains illustrations. The "Centen- 
nial" issue of this weekly, published on July 4, 1876, was a 
remarkable newspaper production. It contained forty pages, 
was profusely illustrated — containing many original engrav- 
ings, executed expressly for the number, at great expense. 
There were portraits of prominent Californians, numerous 
public buildings and private blocks, cuts of blooded stock, 
and many views of notable California natural scenery. The 
illustrations, together with the many columns of carefully pre- 
pared reading matter, much of which was historical and statis- 
tical, would give to those personally unacquainted with Cali- 
fornia a good idea of the progress the State has made siuce its. 
occupancy by Americans. A large number of copies of this 
edition was forwarded to Philadelphia, to be circulated among 
the visitors to the Centennial Exhibition. 

An abortive comic weekl}^ subsists on the credulity of the 
illiterate, with the somewhat jocular title of Jolly Giant. Its 
great hobby, both in cartoons and reading matter, is to annoy 
the Roman clergy. It is needless to say, however, that in this 
direction its efforts are generally futile. 

The religious press in California is by many entirely lost 
sight of; and with those who patronize and sustain it, it is 
apparently assigned to a secondary place. Whether it be the 
worldliness of the people, or a want of ability in the religious 
journals that occasions this, is difficult to answer. An equal 
division of the charge between the two would perhaps approxi- 
mate the fact. Money is the god, and the art of getting it is 
the religion of a majority of San Franciscans. Hence, the 
press has but little chance of victory, when mammon worship 
is epidemic. 

But the religious press of California is composed of secta- 
rian journals that are more or less dogmatic. This, perhaps, 
accounts for the indifference of many. There are journals de- 
voted to each of the following sects: Methodist, Hebrew, Pres- 
byterian, Roman Catholic, Congregational, Baptist, and Epis- 
copal ; but there is no journal whose sectarian belief is name- 


less, and whose creed is simjDly, "Christ Jesus, the Saviour of 
all men; believe on Him, and have eternal life." Sectarian, 
like party journalism, is fast becoming unpopular. 

Two weeMies, the Neio Age and the Pacific Odd Fellow, are 
jDublished in the interest of Odd Fellowship, and this com- 
pletes the enumeration. There are other publications of more 
or less importance, that have not been mentioned in these 
Images, but the leading and representative journals that have 
been noticed will be sufficient to imj)ress the reader with an 
idea of the extent and importance of journalism in San Fran- 







CALIFOENIANS are a "fast" people. Until a few years 
ago, they gloried in this title. It was their ambition to 
lead fast lives, and thereby win a disreputable jDopularity. To 
ignore the common usages of society, treat with contempt any 
show of refinement, to frown upon the encroachments of civ- 
ilization, and to lead a reckless, dare-devil life, was the mark 
of the old California gentleman. Any personal characteristics, 
typical of the life that circumstances forced ujDon the old pio- 
neers, whether of habit, manner, language or dress, was for a 
long time considered an enviable acquirement. It was a sort 
of badge of honor, and to this day an occasional person is met 
who affects these accomplishments, thinking, no doubt, that 
there are still some remaining who have a "weak fondness" 
for anything that awakens memories of "them good old times 
uv '49." 

But we cannot condemn them for their reckless disposition. 
It would be unjust to the brave young men of California's 
golden days — old men now, the few remaining — to speak of 
them otherwise than with respect. They passed through or- 
deals that "tried men's souls;" they lived lives of hardship — 
sacrificing all the comforts, both physical and intellectual, of 
civilization — pioneering the way for future generations to fol- 
low in and enjoy the luxuries that come after. 

Yet they did this unwittingly; few among the early gold- 
hunters on these shores anticipated the greatness that fol- 
lowed so speedily in their tracks. They fulfilled their destinies 
because of selfish promptings. They were after gold, and 
nothing less attractive than gold would have cleared the way 
for civilization. 


They were playing at a chance game; some won golden, 
ingots, and some — won poverty and death. 

They were all gamblers; they had heard that the "stake" 
was here to be won, and they took a "hand" and "played." 
But it was not skill in those days that carried off the prize; 
sheer luck gave victory. 

"At Sutter Creek, if the dirt don't pay, 
We can strike our tents most anj' day." 

The earth was the lottery, their picks and shovels the tickets. 
So with them the very journey hither was a gambling venture, 
and the same disposition to "chance it" prevails to a wonder- 
ful extent among those for whom they led the way. 


Gambling is a mania in San Francisco. It is not neces- 
sary that there should be cards, faro checks, or any of the 
various implements commonly used in games of chance, to 
constitute real gambling. The ordinaiy "outside" stock ope- 
rator stakes his money in as uncertain ventures as he who 
stacks his gold on the green cloth. And, too, there is the 
same "skinning" and "hogging" practised on the unwary 
speculator in mining stocks, as there is in the luxuriously fur- 
nished gambling hall. Baltimore Consolidated and fickle Lady 
Bryan will fleece the purchaser as quick as a deal in ' 'iive- 
ticket racket. " The "ropers" and "eajipers" who haunt the 
"tiger's lair," are not more numerous than the "bulls" and 
"bears" on California Street. The difference is, that the one 
is legitimate and respectable, while the other is criminal and 
publicly condemned. It is very like the Chinaman expressed 
it, when remonstrated with for his fondness for the "tan" 
game: "I heaj) sabee! he alee samee Melican man's stockee 
— sometime belly good, by'm-by he catchee me." 

Pool selling and buying on horse races is a very speculative 
game, and is, withal, highly respectable and exceedingly pop- 
ular. The speed of the horse is in reality a secondary con- 
sideration with most of the sporting class. The different 
branches of commercial traffic are also like so many lotteries 
of more or less im^Dortance, in which some win large amounts, 
while others are fleeced. In fact, we might exclaim with the 
cynic, that life itself is only a game of chance, in which we 
win and lose by turns, but are certain that banki'uptcy will 
ensue when Death deals out his checks. 


The law against gambling in San Francisco, is a farce. It 
is only a moral morsel that tastes well abroad, but at our own 
doors, the flavor is too rank to be palatable. Even John China- 
naan, who is a favorite subject for special legislation, chuckles 
over his heaps of copper coin, that he has gathered from the 
gaming table, and reflects with evident satisfaction uj)on the 
disposition of the municipal authorities to joke. 

"With one hundred and fifty Chinese gambling dens in the 
city, and jDcrhaps a much larger number presided over by the 
Caucasian of different nationalities, and a law to strictly pro- 
hibit gambling, — with this combination harmoniously existing 
in a city no larger than San Francisco — this is an examj^le 
of consistent inconsistency that seldom occurs more than once 
in a decade. 


There are not any real " first-class gambling houses," in San 
Francisco; no marble palaces furnished in costly elegance, 
where silver and gold plate, laden with the most expensive 
luxuries, are spread before the visitors. The law against 
gambling, is productive of economy to the gambler, in this, 
that it prevents an outlay of that kind. 

There are numerous gambling houses, however, where much 
elegance is maintained, and although costly dinners are not 
commonly set, the choicest brands of champagne and liquors, 
are liberally dispensed by courteous attendants. Faro is the 
popular game with the better class of gamblers, inasmuch as it 
is more seductive and fascinating than any other, and the 
manner of dealing is apparently fairer. 

The better class houses are the resort of the more wealthy 
sports, and are much patronized by the stock-brokers, pros- 
perous merchants, and persons engaged in all kinds of busi- 
ness that affords a moderately good supply of ready cash. At 
night, the gaming table supersedes the stock boards. Men 
crowd these gambling halls as intent upon speculation as 
when thronging the lobbies at the stock exchange rooms. 
They stake their money on a card with as much faith in a 
"lucky deal" as when eagerly clambering for shares in Ophir. 

The air of gentility that pervades any well-ordered gambling 
hall, is wonderfully soothing to a disturbed conscience. There 
is no boisterous conduct allowed, no uproarous hilarity or loud 
shouts of laughter, but quiet reigns, the silence being broken 


only by the subdued tones of the men who manijDulate the 
game — winner and loser, alike quietly, though with faces 
flushed from anxiety, submitting to the decrees of fate as seen 
turned out through the mystic atmosphere that hovers over 
the green covered table. 

Thousands of dollars change hands, and the game goes on 
as though nothing was involved of more importance than the 
*'■ cigars" or " drinks." There is sometimes, however, a wail 
of agony that goes up from these quiet retreats, when the fas- 
cinated victim has lost his last stake — which may have been 
the home of his family, the food of his innocent children, or 
his honor, — a wail of horror and woe that is piercing to the 
hardest heart. It is this cry that apj)eals to humanity, to civi- 
lization, and to the law, to save the fathers, sons and brothers 
of the land from ruin, by removing from our midst the temjDta- 
tion that lures them on. "What is yet sadder is the knowledge 
that some of the best citizens of the country, after risking and 
losing their all at the gambling table, have quietly left the 
room to die before morning, by their own hand. 

The low class gambling dens and houses, though the haunts 
of the degraded, vicious and criminal, are not more productive 
of evil than those where the refined and cultured congregate. 
The devil is never so dangerous as when he comes in the guise 
of a holy angel. In his most terrible aspect, we shun him 
from fear — we hide from him. So, with the low class gamb- 
ling places, where general disorder and riot prevails; manj^ who 
would patronize them under more quiet and peaceful circum- 
stances are frightened from them by the terror they inspire. 

At these places, drunkenness, vice, and crime hold high car- 
nival. Not only robbery and assault are perpetrated, but life is 
endangered and often taken. Trickery and swindling of every 
character are practised, and the most hideous side of humanity 
there shows itself. On " Barbary Coast," these infamous dens 
are most numerous, yet they are scattered about through more 
respectable parts of the city. 

The profitable class of patrons at these places are lured into 
them by ropers. Those who make this business a profession 
seldom fail to induce their victim to go where they want him. 
They are, to all appearances, perfect gentlemen, and to decline 
their invitation to " take a stroll," after a friendly social con- 
versation, would be rude and show ill-breeding. They make 


capital out of the pride of decorum and gallantry that is gen- 
erally a marked characteristic of rural visitors to the city. 
Every fellow who visits the city — especially if he is an Ameri- 
can — thinks that "other country chaps may be greeners, but 
as for me, I have seen enough of the dark ways and vain tricks 
of the world to know how to take care of myself; and that's 
what's the matter! They can't play me." The roper-in fully 
understands this personal vanity and encourages it, assuming 
ignorance of things he " would like to know," and suffering 
himself to be led, rather than to lead. These fellows, that 
know all and have seen all, are just the game the roper and 
capper delights in, and they generally succeed in bagging it. 

The evil results of gambling have been told, over and over 
again, until the reader who is well informed has grown weary of 
meeting the subject. As long as gambling houses are not sup- 
pressed, they will find patrons; hence it is evident that the 
shortest and quickest way to be rid of this evil influence, is to 
rid the country of the leaders in the profession. The most 
serious result is dishonesty — gambling with other people's 
money. If persisted in, it seldom fails to come to that. This 
accounts for the numerous cases of embezzlement by young 
men employed in positions of trust. 






BEYOND the mighty Pacific, and forming its western shore, 
there is a land of beauty, strangely fertile, and occupied 
by hundreds of millions of strange people, whose civilization is 
peculiar, and was, in the remote past, strangely progressive. 
It is a remarkable country. Over four hundred million human 
beings dwell there, under the same government, controled by 
the same laws, and speaking the same language. They study 
the same literature, and possess a history of their own, that 
extends over a longer period than that of any other people. 

The inhabitants of this land form a nation whose existence 
dates back to the remotest period of antiquity; and this nation 
has, during all these slow rolling centuries maintained a seclu- 
sion — an existence of and for itself — that renders it still more 
remarkable and peculiar. It has had a separate and inde- 
joendent growth from any other nation in the world, and 
stands alone in its government, religion, philosophy, manu- 
facturing industry, agriculture, literature, and its language. 
Its history gives proof that its civilization, when at its climax, 
was sujDerior, and wonderfully progressive; but unlike the 
European nations, it has undergone a retrograde movement, 
during the last five centuries, and to-day has in it some of the 
offensive features of barbarism. Such is China, the home of 
that people whom Europeans have chosen to call heathens, 
because of their ignorance of the Christian religion. 

But, however heathenish the Chinese are, the race is char- 
acterized for its fondness of j^eace and domestic order, and 
for its great capabilities of organization and self-government. 
The people are thoroughly practical and unimaginative; sober, 
industrious, and deeply imbued with the mercantile spiiit. 


They understand every principle of economy, and are patient 
under affliction and oppression, to a wonderful degree. 

But they are the slaves of custom, doing everything by pre- 
cedent. There is little diversity of mind among them; so 
great is the desire of all to follow the rules laid down by their 
ancient philosophers that their thoughts and ambition i-un in 
the same well-worn groove. They look not to the future, in 
their aspirations, except as they hope to see there repeated 
the history of the past; hence they advance in nothing that 
tends to a higher civilization. They are wonderful retainers 
and perpetuators, but know not the art of discovery. Indeed, 
they are satisfied if they are only enabled to trace the foot- 
steps of their forefathers and follow the path they trod. 
Their most sacred duty is to reverence the aged wise, cherish 
the memory of the dead, andworshij? their disembodied spirits. 

The government of the Chinese Empire is autocratic. The 
emperor is absolute in the empire, the governor in the prov- 
ince, the magistrate in the district. The system of govern- 
ment is very complete. They possess a code of laws that 
comprehends the whole administrative machinery, which is 
modified or added to as emergencies demand, by imperial 
edicts. The emperor is absolute, as administrator of the laws; 
but he must not depart from custom in executing them. Their 
penal code was begun more than two thousand years ago, and 
it is so universally circulated among the people that j^rinted 
copies can be obtained by those in the humblest circumstances. 
The emperor has his assistants, corresponding very nearly to 
our president's cabinet;, governors have under them subordi- 
nate officers, and so on down to th^ lowest official position. 
In times of domestic peace, the Chinaman enjoys unrestricted 
freedom, so long as he conforms to the laws. He can travel 
anywhere in the dominion, or pursue any calling that pleases 

Females are little better than slaves. The}' are looked upon 
as merchantable j^roperty, and are bought and sold hke any 
other article of traffic, though their value is not generally 
grea,t. A Chinese woman never gains any distinction until 
after death. Then, if favorable circumstances transpire, she 
may be canonized, and ever after be an object of devout wor- 
ship. Female infants are often destroyed, although an impe- 
rial edict exists against the practice of infanticide. Considering 


the humble position the women occupy in China, and the harct 
life they therefore lead, it would perhaps be better (certainly 
more merciful) were they all slain in infancy, and better still,, 
were they never born. Let "the lords of creation," in America 
and EurojDe, point to the women of the Celestial Empire, and 
ask their "oppressed sisters" to compare their social and j^oUt- 
ical position with them. With the one it is inequality with 
men, because of utter degradation; with the other, inequality 
(if so it may be called) because of extreme exaltation; and 
this is one difference in European and Asiatic civilization. 

The Chinese mandarins (called in China kwan-fu) are the 
various government officials. Their different positions are 
indicated chiefly by the color of the buttons on the top of 
their caps. Any official position is honorable, and of course 
the higher the office, the greater the distinction it gives. All 
officers are chosen by a system of competitive examinations as 
to education, and those most learned are considered best quali- 
fied for conducting the affairs of government, and are there- 
fore i^referred. This accounts for the great desire every China- 
man has to become educated, as by this means alone can he 
hope to rise above a menial position. Few of the Chinese, 
even among the lower classes, are unable to read and write. 
But in China, as it is in all other nations, there are some who have 
no high ambition, and hence do not care to devote any of their 
time to matters that briug distinction. Yet what is their edu- 
cation after all, but confirming them in the already seemiugly 
fixed belief that there is nothiug to learn except what has been 
learned; for, even the modern Chinese sage and philosopher is 
forever groping backward in the dusky past among records so 
ancient as to be inseparable from mythological history. And 
the more profound his knowledge of traditional antiquity, the 
greater is he esteemed for his erudition. 

Three forms of belief constitute the national religion of China 
— the Confucian, based on the philosophic writings of Con- 
fucius, an aucient Chinese sage — which is not a religion as 
pertains to spiritualitj', but is simply an excellent code of 
morals; the Buddhist, introduced from India, and now pojjular 
only among the most illiterate, and the Taouist — founded by 
Lao-tse, another ancient Chinese philosopher — which bears a 
close resemblance to modern Si^iritualism. The Confucian has 
many adherents. It is the basis of the social life and political 


system of the nation, and is professed by all the great and 
learned jDersons. 

The Chinese are exceedingly skillful in handicraft. Their 
wove fabrics of silk, satin and gauzes; their beautiful embroid- 
ery, delicate filligree work in gold and silver; their elaborate 
engraving on wood and stone, and carvings on ivory; their 
celebrated pottery and their brilliant colorings, are wonder- 
fully wrought, and cannot but be admired. Their system of 
agriculture is crude, though very successful. They fully un- 
derstand the value of the various fertilizers, and their plan of 
irrigation is very comj)lete. The whole of the arable land is 
utilized, and because of the vast population that has so long 
subsisted on the products of the soil, and is yet mainly depend- 
ent uj)on it, much attention is given to its proper cultivation. 
Of so vital importance is agriculture to the nation, that on the 
first day of each year a grand state ceremony is held in its 
honor, in which the Emperor takes the lead. Similar solem- 
nities are celebrated by the governors of the different pro- 
vinces also. 

All the social customs of the Chinese, are governed and pre- 
scribed by the ancient Le-King, or Book of Rites, in which is 
laid down in detail the ceremonies and observances, to the 
number of three thousand, that regulates their social inter- 
course. So important are these ceremonial usages considei'ed, 
that a legal tribunal is established at Pekin, called the Board 
of Bites, whose duty it is to interpret them. Their festivals 
are numerous, and like everything else pertaining to this 
strange people, peculiar. Their language is wonderful, and 
their literature comprehensive. In whatever light we view 
them, striking peculiarities are manifest, and until we have 
become more familiar with them, they will ever be surrounded 
by a mysterious atmosphere. 

We have thus briefly outlined some of the chief characteris- 
tics of this peox^le, as they are fouud in that land that has so 
long supported their national existence, as to be sacred to its 
inhabitants beyond our comprehension. Having seen them at 
home, we are better prepared to understand them abroad ; 
though in our most intimate relations with them in our own 
country, we have learned that "their ways are past findiug 



In China, notwithstanding her dominion extends over a vast 
ten'itory, the population is so great that there are necessarily 
many poor persons who know not of luxury, but by the most 
abstemious habits manage barely to exist. It is an innate prin- 
ciple of human nature to have the desire to improve the condi- 
tion of life ; to wish to be comfortably provided for in eveiy 
respect. AVhen the ports of the empire Avere thrown open to 
Europeans, and those who entered therein had learned some- 
what of the character of the population; when tbey saw their 
over-crowded condition and observed their habits of economy, 
industry, and patient toiling, there were those among them 
who at onde were seized with a speculative desire, and resolved 
to take advantage of the servile condition of the inhabitants, 
and woo them from their homes, to utilize their labor for their 
own profit. It was not a difiicult matter to engage influential 
natives to aid in this scheme; and ere long, by the inducements 
that were held out to the half-starved jDOjiulation, ships bur- 
dened with human freight were departing from those oriental 
shores, bound for foreign lands, where manual labor was valu- 

Americans were not long in joining in the sj)eculation, A 
treaty was entered into between the two governments — the 
United States and China — sanctioning, and thereby encour- 
aging, immigration and friendly intercourse of the inhabit- 
ants. The consummation of these negotiations was consid- 
ered a great triumph for Christianity and European civiliza- 
tion ; for China had so long rej)elled any attempt to introduce 
Christianity among her subjects, and had so long been averse 
to mingling with other nations, either commercially or socially — 
resisting all overtures, and always manifesting a disposition to 
be let alone — that when her gates were thrown open, the 
missionaries, who had patiently waited without her walls, only 
knocking occasionally for admittance, broke forth in a new 
song of joy, for the}' believed that the millennium was dawn- 
ing, and the "year of jubilee" had come. 

When California so suddenly bared her bosom to the world, 
and showed the first evidence of the wondrous fertility and re- 
sources she possessed, that were only waiting the quickening 
touch of progress for their development, the tide of Chinese 
immigration was diverted hither. It was not, at the out- 


set, SO mucli an immig-ration, as an importation, for the hea- 
then, -with his love of home and country, and his passive mind, 
would not have ventured into unknown lands unimpelled. He 
was sold into slavery by his superior fellows, who, for their 
services in deluding him into the toils of the Caucasian specu- 
lator, shared in the profits his labor yielded. 

First, but a ripjjle was discovered on the placid Pacific, as 
the solitary shijD slowly drifted across from the distant shore — 
and her human freight numbered not many ; and that ripple 
had long disappeared before another came, from a similar 
cause. But soon the waters of the ocean were greatly dis- 
turbed, and rolled in increasing- turbulence, for they were 
parted by many keels; and many great paddle-wheels were 
angrily beating them back, or they were burrowed in by swift- 
revolving propellers, that sent them twirling in foaming ed- 
dies. And the great panting white -winged monsters that 
caused all this commotion were bearing thousands of China's 
semi-barbarians to California's "golden shores." Thus did 
they first come among us, and thus have they continued to 
pour in, until now the stream flows on uninterrupted, only 
increasing in volume wave after wave. Many of those who 
were imjDorted remained long enough to gain their freedom, 
and besides accumulate considerable money, and then returned 
to their native land. Those going back among their poor kin- 
dred and friends, with a quantity of gold that is considered a 
fortune in China, kindled in others the desire to seek a fortune 
in California ; hence those who came voluntarily, added to the 
many whose labor is contracted for before they have even heard 
that such a country as this exists, has swelled the in-flowing 
tide to an immensity that reasonably alarms the white popula- 
tion of the Pacific Coast. 


What the influence of the Chinese population in California 
has been upon the state, is not so difficult to answer as what it 
is noio, and will he in the future. Yet any answer to this 
question in its past and present significance is only opinion, 
and in its future bearing, only conjecture. Allowing no feel- 
ing of prejudice that the present excitement relating to Chi- 
nese immigration may have awakened, to bias our opinion, 
we cannot believe otherwise than that the Chinese in Cali- 


fornia have contributed largely to lier prosperity. They have 
in no instance retarded her progress, but have aided in the 
development of her vast resources. Look at the question in 
this light! Thirty years ago, San Francisco was a hamlet with 
scarce a breeze of life in it. Thirty years ago, the State of 
California was a wilderness, overrun by wild animals, and no 
less wild humans. It was an almost unheard of country. View 
the contrast. To-day San Francisco is a veritable metropolis; 
a city than which there is no other more prosj^erous, none 
with more comparative present greatness, and none with a 
brighter future prospect, in the world. The State has aston- 
ished the Avorld by its wonderful resources. Its fertile soil — 
so productive — and its mineral wealth, command universal ad- 
miration. This is not merely of local importance, but its 
value is recognized all over the land. Why, the progress of 
the city of San Francisco, and State of California in these 
three decades is almost equal to the advance of other cities 
and countries during the years of a century ! What has done 
this? — Labor. True, the foundations of this greatness were 
firmly implanted in the soil, and in the granite mountains, 
but it was not a spontaneous develoj)ment. Hard, earnest 
work, by human hands, had to be and has been performed. 
And there has been no class of people among the inhabitants 
more busilj' employed than the Chinese jiopulation. And 
until two or three years past, their labor was entirely directed 
by intelligent American or European minds; by men who to- 
day are looked upon as the leaders in this rapid march of pro- 
gression. They were needed, else they would have been idle, 
or working for themselves. They were in demand, or they 
would not have been imported to our shores. 

No one will say that too much has been accomplished in 
this short j)eriod. We have not more houses in our cities than 
are occupied; we have not more railroads traversing our 
mountains and plains than receive suj^portiug patronage; we 
have not too many waving fields of grain, blooming orchards 
and purple vineyards; we have not too many drills penetrat- 
ing our mountains; nor have we too many foundries and 
factories, where intricate machinery is employed to do the 
work of many willing hands. While all this has been doing, 
there are few, if any, in this whole country, that have suffered 
because of forced idleness, or little comf)ensatiou for work 


performed. Thus, taking things as they are and as they have 
been, we cannot see that the presence of the Chinese among 
us, in the past, has resulted in evil, but the benefits they have 
wrought are seen on every hand. The influence they may 
have exerted on society and morality in the past, is not to be 
considered. Indeed, it would be well for the population of 
European origin to withhold comparison in this, for, unfortu- 
nately for them, the Chinaman had but little influence, one 
way or the other, and whatever the condition of society and 
public morals has been, it was only what they made it them- 
selves. For a long time in California there was no society, 
and morality had but a faint meaning. 

Their influence at present is not materially different from 
what it has been in the past. As other residents of California 
have prospered, so have the Chinese, and their power in the 
country is greater in the ratio of the increase of their wealth 
and acquirements. The treaty stipulations forbid them be- 
coming citizens, and hence they have no power whatever by 
ballot. Because of their simple wants and economical habits, 
they can live with a much less expenditure of money than 
other nationalities, and therefore they can accumulate money 
more rapidly at the same wages, and if needs be, work profitably 
ior much less than the white laborers. Therefore, in seasons 
of general business depression the tendency is, for the Chi- 
nese to supersede white workmen in the various mechanical 
trades and laboring capacities, though the excitement from 
this cause is rather premature, for the instances are few in- 
deed, where Chinese labor has been actually substituted for 
white. In some of the manufacturing businesses where the 
l^ropiietors have found it impossible to pay the current price 
for white labor, and compete with similar manu.factories in the 
East — where white labor is obtained for less than Chinese 
is here — rather than abandon the business entirely, they have 
dismissed their white workmen and employed Chinamen, not, 
however, without first extending to the former the privilege of 
remaining on the reduced salaries. In this way some of the 
infant industries, especially in manufacturing, have been sus- 
tained, and gradually have grown self-supporting and able, by 
degrees, to substitute white labor for Chinese. There are nu- 
merous factories and shops that would soon cease to mingle in 
the hum of maniifacturing life, were an exodus of the whole 


Chinese population of the Coast to suddenly take place. So 
it is a question, whether or not the trades and various busi- 
nesses that the Chinese have partly engaged in, or have wholly 
monopolized, would have been nearly so extensively carried 
on, had they not taken hold of them, or would continue, 
did they abandon them noAV. These are some of the intrica- 
cies that must be fully explained before too decided action is 
taken relative to the Chinamen that are already among us. 

If this wail for relief from Chinese immigration, that goes up 
so pathetically, was the expression of agony wrung from the 
jDOor laboring men and women in California, by the oppressive 
yoke the heathen has lain ui^on them, then would we say, let 
us rise in our might and shake it off. But in its cadence we 
can plainly distinguish the assumed lamentations of weak, 
though asj)iring politicians, who lead in this dismal concert, 
hoping that they will be caught up by the human wave that 
follows after, and borne on its crest to political glory. 

Possibly the worst feature of the jDresence of the Chinese, 
is their clannishness; their national individuality. California 
may yet solve a jDroblem that no other country in the world has 
attempted, — that of harmonizing two distinct and almost op- 
posite civilizations, without the one blending with the other. 
From the experience she has already had, it does not seem 
that the Chinese are going to assimilate themselves to the 
habits and customs of Americans or Europeans; and it is cer- 
tain that the heathen will not convert the Christian, or Chris- 
tianized infidel, to his manner of life. So if the influx of Chi- 
nese continues, there must, of necessity, be some understanding 
and harmony between the two races, if they live under the 
same laws and occuj^y the same territory. 

But Chinese immigration must be stopped, or they must adopt 
a style of life that is not offensive to refined American taste. 
Let them remain in their own land or conform somewhat to 
the customs of the peoj)le among whom they choose to abide. 
We care not for their style of dress, for their queues, if they 
choose to retain them, nor for their religion; but they must 
respect the laws of decency and health, as we interpret them, 
and not make themselves and their places of abode odious in 
our sight. We have enough of such characters of our own 
kind, and need no more. Perhaps if we were more particular 
to conceal our own squalid habitations, we would find it easier 
to enforce niles of decency among them. 


Who knows, but that this opening up of the Chinese Em- 
pire, and pouring its hordes of queer inhabitants upon the sur- 
rounding nations, is but a part of the unwritten and mysteri- 
ous history of the destiny of nations, that cannot be averted — 
another of the strange things that were to happen in the nine- 
teenth century, the purjDose of which will be revealed only in 
the future! Indeed, it is a mysterious power that controls the 
destiny of the world, whose sceptered hand is not seen except 
in the ages that are past. 







IT has been variously estimated that there are on the Pacific 
Coast one hundred thousand to one hundred and sixty 
thousand Chinese. These estimates are, however, based on 
uncertainties. Taking the records of arrivals and departures, 
and allowing a reasonable number for deaths, the population 
remaining at present is not less than one hundred and thirty 
thousand, and perhaps considerably exceeds this. It is ex- 
ceedingly difficult to ascertain, even approximately, how many 
of these are in the city of San Francisco. They are so irregu- 
larly distributed — in some portions of the city being almost 
as numerous as bees about a hive on a sultry daj', while on the 
residence streets and in the suburbs, they are found only at 
distant intervals. Besides, where one is known to dwell, there 
may be a score of others occupying the same tenement, that 
are seldom seen. Their knowledge of economy is applied to 
space as well as to other important matters of living, so it is 
impossible to know how many there are, or where they keep 

A petition was circulated for signatures of citizens in the 
latter part of 1875, by the resident Chinese, asking for the 
appointment, by the Postoffice Department at Washington, of 
a Chinese postal clerk, which stated that the number of Chinese 
in the city was nearly ninety thousand. This was evidently 
an exaggeration indulged in for effect, for excluding the tran- 
sient pojoulation — w^hich is sometimes very large, especially 
during dull times in the interior of the State — the number does 
not exceed sixty thousand, and a safer estimate would reduce 
it to between forty-five and fifty thousand. The greater num- 
ber of these are able-bodied males, and therefore on the basis 


by whicli the whole population of the city is computed — allow- 
ing three for children and females, for every one man — and 
assuming that the labor of a Chinaman is of equal value to 
the labor of a white man, they offset one hundred and fifty 
thousand of the whites, or more than half of the entire popu- 
lation of San Francisco. Thei-e are about two thousand Chi- 
nese women, and a few hundred children. It is therefore 
plain that the Chinese population of San Francisco is a for- 
midable element, and inasmuch as the majority of them are 
engaged in various laboring cajDacities, their jDresence is already 
felt, and the rapidity with which they still pour in upon us is 
necessarily startling to those with whom their labor comes in 


Although, as a race, the Chinese are characterized for their 
love of domestic life, few family circles have been formed among 
them in San" Francisco. "Woman, the important link in the 
fiacred chain, is not here; or if she is here, she is in that infa- 
mous pursuit that is the great destroyer of homes. 

Of the whole number of Chinese women in the city, there 
are, j)erhaps, less than a hundred who are lawful wives or 
mothers, and " keepers at home." The others are the victims 
of the basest system of slaveiy that has ever been tolerated in 
heathen or Christian lands — slaves to the lusts of the vilest 
men. Those who are virtuous wives, live retired lives, hid 
from pubUc gaze, so that little is known of their habits in pri- 
vate domestic life. They, however, occupy menial positions 
to their husbands, serving ever, and seldom served, daily ac- 
knowledging the superiority of their lord, by abject humilia- 
tion, in obeying his supreme commands. Beside their house- 
hold duties — which are exceedingly simple — they are engaged 
in various light pursuits, such as needle-work, manufacturing 
fancy ornaments, etc., contributing thereby to the mutual 
family support. Their children are apparently well cared for, 
as their round, plump, rosy cheeks, and general thrifty apj)ear- 
ance bears evidence. They are only diminutive chinamen 
or women, each clad in the same style of garb as their elders, 
and each wearing the sacred ornament — the pig-tail, or queue 
— that dangles from the head of every chinaman, whether old 
or young, rich or poor, male or female — except a very few, who 
have been converted to Christianity. (The women sometimes 


dej)art from this custom, by putting' up their hair in a sort of 
Chinese architectural style, puffed, and rolled, and orna- 
mented with a variety of brass and gilt trappings, and lofty 
combs, incomprehensible to us, and certainly uncomfortable 
to them. This make-up, however, reveals a copious use of oil 
or paste, as well as skillful manipulation by an experienced 
hairdresser. ) But the dress of the little fellows is generally of 
some bright, though neutral colored fabric, always durable, 
and not unfrequently fine in texture, and costly. The children 
all have a remarkably intelligent look; their bright black eyes 
have an expressiveness that is never seen in adult Chinamen. 
Their young intellects are free, not yet hampered by that schol- 
astic training that enslaves the mind in the ever-narrowing- 
limits of custom, and begets that stolid and unimpressionable 
look of unconcern, that is most repulsive in the countenance 
of the adult Chinese. This, indeed, is the chief personal char- 
acteiistic of the race — this lack of animated expression in the 
countenance. It is hard to define what kind of a look it is: 
cold, hard, unsympathetic, indifi'erent, blank, statue-like, sad, 
cunning, wise and defiant, partly express it, and it is the 
same in every Chinaman you meet. It is stereotyped in evexy 
member of the race; as if the mind of each had been formed in 
the same mould, and manifests its action in the eye and counte- 
nance, in the same way in all. Some of the most intelligent 
business men among them have learned to show some anima- 
tion of countenance, by their frequent contact with Europeans 
and Americans, whose faces, as indices to their thoughts, are 
as constantly changing in expression as the flower-flecked and 
verdant landscape in the sunshine and showers of an Aj)ril 
day; but the animation is forced, and therefore results in ugly 

Though all Californians are familiar with the dress of the 
Chinese, some persons may read this sketch who have never 
had the oj)portunity of seeing a citizen of the ' ' flowery king- 
dom" in oriental attire, and to whom a brief description of his 
raiment woiild be desired information. Yet we will not attempt 
to disrobe their garments of the mystery that is connected with 
them, for in exjjloring those capacious sleeves, we might 
discover evidences of the " ways that are dark, and tricks that 
are (not always) vain " (-ly played) of the " Heathen Chinee," 
who is peculiar. The laboring class almost universally, wear 


outer garments of the light blue cotton denims, similar to, and 
often the same kind that is so much used for overalls and 
jumpers, by white laborers. The f)ants are cut in the same 
style that the Europeans and Americans follow, only made 
fuller in the legs, and subject to no changes whatever. Their 
shoes are made of cloth (generally serge for uppers), with leath- 
er and cork (or wood) soles. The soles of the shoes are about 
an inch in thickness, having no high heel, but following the 
exact outline of the bottom of the foot, turning up slightly at 
the toes. The shoe is low cut, offering no protection to the ankle, 
and maybe plain cloth or richly embroidered, or beaded, as the 
wearer chooses. Their hats are straight rimmed, with square 
crowns, light pearl or black in color — made of common wool. 
Those who work outdoors, however, wear the regular Chinese 
umbrella hat, -which is very broad brimmed, serving as a pro- 
tection against sunshine and also rain. This is made of bam- 
boo splits or rushes, and in shape resembles a common tin 
milk pan turned up-side-down. Their coats (or the garments 
worn instead of the coat) are the peculiar articles of attii-e. 
They are made of the same kind of fabric as the pantaloons, 
and cut without any reference to the shape of the body — ex- 
cept fitting neatly around the neck and having sleeves for the 
arms. They have no lappel or turndown collar — seldom a col- 
lar band — and when they are properly adjusted on the person, 
one side entirely overlaps the other, and is fastened by loops 
and small brass buttons, almost on the shoulder, and along 
down the side. The body of the coat is made very full, and 
hangs loose and straight, extending nearly to the knees. The 
coat sleeve is the most wonderful part of the whole make-up. 
It fits the arm very neatly, near the shoulder, but gradually 
widens toward the end until it assumes the proportions of a 
lady's hoop-skirt (the ladies will pardon the comj)arison) ex- 
tending farther and wider to — ad vifinitum (for we never have 
had the privilege of seeing a full-sized sleeve unrolled, and 
therefore cannot tell how long it may be). It is certainly very 
wide and flowing, completely covering the hand, — and if 
necessary, any small articles of value, such as boxes of cigars, 
silver tea-sets, and the like — when not rolled, or pinned back. 
"When a change of temperature demands more clothing, a 
quilted sleeveless jacket is worn outside the coat. Their under- 
wear is made of the famous white canton flannel. The skirt of 


tlie shirt Langs outside of the body of the pants, a few inches 
of its lower margin showing below the skirt of the coat, — a 
style somewhat shocking to the modesty of Eastern ladies, upon 
their first arrival on the Pacific Coast. A few of the laboring 
Chinamen have adopted the American costume of dress, 
throughout, and many apparently prefer the heavy stoga boot 
to their cork-soled shoes. 

The wealthy Chinese merchants and gentlemen go as it were 
" clothed in iniri^le and fine linen." Their garments are made 
of the richest cassimere and silks, and the style is modified so 
as to give a more refined appearance to the wearer. There is 
not such a superabundance of material used, and the slat- 
ternly looseness observed in the dress of their poorer brothers 
is not seen in their garments. Those who are dressed in great- 
est elegance, have their pantaloon legs neatl}' gathered or 
folded at the bottom, and tied or buckled close to the ankle, 
giving them a similar appearance to the knee-breeches and 
silk stockings indulged in by our country's founders. These 
wear neat, close-fitting silk caps, without rims — after the style 
of mandarins, or government ofl&cials, at home. An intelligent 
Chinaman, dressed a la mode de Peking, and fresh from hi& 
barber, commands the respect of any person, no matter what 
his ideas of refinement. 

The women are not easily distinguished from the men by the 
difference of their toilettes. Their garments are apparently 
cut after the same pattern, only made more roomy and gene- 
rail}^ of more delicate material. Their shoes are finer and ta- 
pered oflf in imitation of the small shoes worn by the aristocratic 
ladies of the Empire- — whose feet are frequently not permitted 
to exceed three inches in length — with a corresponding taper. 
The only covering for their head is a large silk kerchief, usu- 
ally of some rich color. There is no attempt whatever to dress 
or ornament the neck, either by the men or women. About 
the only ornaments the ladies use, are large ivory or bone rings, 
worn around the ankles and wrists, a finger ring or two, and 
earrings — except in dressing the hair. The women are low 
and stout built, while the men, as a class, are not so high 
in stature as the Americans, not so muscular, and considerably 
inferior in bodily strength. They have great powers of endur- 
ance, however. 

Except at the restaurants, their larders are very scantily sup- 


plied, as to variety of edibles, and the bill of fare is simple. 
Eice, fish and pork is their priucijDal food, and tea the uni- 
versal beverage. They cook over an open fire — in a kind of 
a mortar-shaped stove, or brazier — and the fuel they use in 
preparing a meal would hardly be sufficient to start a fire in 
the common kitchen stove or range. A half-dozen will gather 
round a small table, in the centre of which is set a large bowl 
of rice, pork and potatoes — all cooked together — and with a 
small plate or dish, and a pair of chop-sticks {fai-isz, literally, 
nimble lads) each, they will "make a hearty meal." Fre- 
quently two or three will eat from the same dish. They drink 
their tea at all times of the day, but seldom while eating. 


The Chinese New Year festivities are the most interesting, 
both to themselves and to persons of other nationalities, of all 
their celebrations. This occurs generally in the last days of 
February (according to our calendar) and the festivities con-. 
tinue for a week at least. San Francisco being the metropolis^ 
of the Pacific Coast, to the Chinese as well as to the white, 
population, it is the grand gathering place for them on all extra, 

The New Year is the season of presents with the Chinese, as 
with the inhabitants of the Tvestern nations. Sweetmeats, 
toys, fancy articles, and a great variety of things that differ 
from the ordinary necessities of life, that is a rarity, or will 
answer for a keepsake, are exchanged among them as New 
Year's gifts. 

Before the New Year has dawned, it is supposed that every 
Chinaman has satisfied his creditors for any debts that may 
have been contracted during the year. If he is not jn'ompt in 
settling all little business matters, his creditors besiege him on 
New Year's eve and plead and threaten until he is willing (as 
a rule) to make a clean settlement. The person who begins; 
the New Year heavily in debt, is not expected to prosper or to 
find much enjoyment in life. Such a rule would work admir- 
ably among all nationalities. 

The Chinese quarter, during the celebration days, is a scene 
of gay life and heathen revelry, that surpasses description. 
The streets are all aglow with fantastic holiday trappings. The 
dusky sons of the Oriental Empire throng every highway and 


"byway, clad in their very finest and best holiday attire, and for 
once during the twelve months show a degree of animation on 
their countenances that is pleasant to behold, as a contrast to 
their usually stolid visages. The number is greatly increased 
by the residents of the interior, who have quit their various 
pursuits with one accord, and flocked to the city to join in the 
national celebration. 

All business places are abandoned for the time (except those 
which the success of the festivities require to be kept open), 
and this whole hive of queer humans is stirred to its profound- 
est depths by the excitement of the occasion. Housewives, 
who for the three hundred and sixty days preceding have had 
faithful servants, find of a sudden that the kitchen is deserted, 
and the laundrymen ujDon whom the family is dependent for 
their glossy linen, disturbs not the door-bell during the days 
of merrymaking. Thus do they all betake themselves to the fes- 
tive scene, throwing aside all care and anxiety of mind, and 
mingling in the recreative sports and social ceremonies that 
make this season, of all others, the most joyous. 

At the early dawn of morning, the New Years' calling is be- 
gun. The custom of visiting friends and relatives on this day 
is more universally observed among the Chinese than Europe- 
ans. Each person carries his cards, which are made of neat 
red paper, and have his name written upon them in Chinese 
characters. Friendly salutations are exchanged upon the 
streets, and at the houses where the visitor calls a glass of 
wine is taken, with some light refreshments. The eldest 
friends are the first who receive visits, and after the honors 
have been paid to them, chums and cronies are remembered, 
and receive even a fuller share of attention than the former. 
"New joy, new joy! get rich, get rich!" are the words of 
greeting they use, equivalent to "Happy New Year." 

Chinatown during those days looks more like an oriental city 
than at any other time of the year. Much fantastic-colored 
bunting is displayed from windows and house-tops, and de- 
pending over the walks are Chinese lanterns of every size, 
color, and design; while the doors, windows, and walls of the 
houses, both inside and out, are decked with placards bearing 
all sorts of strange characters, wrought in gilt, black, and 
bright red. The restaurants and theatres are gaudy with 
brilliant adornments, and the air is rank with the odor from 


the crowded courts and kitchens where the banquets are pre- 

"When their use is not jDrohibited by a city ordinance, the 
roar of fire-crackers and Chinese bombs is incessant, and deaf- 
ing as the noise of battle. The Chinese seem to more fully 
understand the importance of noisy celebrations, than any 
other people; for although a fourth of July in America may 
echo a few more terrible sounds, they continue their tumult 
and racket unceasingly until the last hour of the period for 
celebration has passed. Squeaking Chinese fiddles and kettle- 
drums add their harsh tones to the general discord. To those 
unaccustomed to the habits of this people, the scene is one of 
utmost disorder and confusion. All this terrible racket of 
drums, gongs, bombs, and fire-crackers, is made for a purjDose 
that needs to be explained. They suppose that spirits are 
everj'where — spirits of the just as well as the unjust. This 
ujDroar is created therefore to frighten away from earth all bad 
spirits that may have gathered about during the past year, so 
that the new year will be begun without any evil influences 
having a hold on the people. 

The sidewalks, and even the middle of the streets, are 
thronged with eager life. Wealthy merchants, clothed in 
long priestly robes of purple silk or satin, jDass to and fro, 
busy in conducting some particular parts of the ceremonies 
of the celebration, and Avomen and children, dressed in most 
peculiar and brilliant attire, their faces painted till they look 
more like dolls or toys than humans, mingle in the motley 
throng. In secluded alleys and courts, the active youth in- 
dulge in various sports to the delight of many lookers-on. 
A game played with a feathered-ball seems to be quite poj^u- 
lar among the athletic fellows. The ball is simpiy a strip of 
fish-skin, dried with the scales on, folded up neatly to about 
an inch and a half square, and pierced with a few feathers 
three or four inches in length, so as to make it keep its poise 
"when tossed in air. A copper coin is added to give it weight. 
The skin is elastic, so that when it is struck with the hand or 
foot, it quickly rebounds. There does not seem to be any 
"points" in the game, as the manner of playing is simply to 
toss the ball up and then the person it falls nearest to is 
expected to bat it with the bottom of his foot, which involves 
a very peculiar motion of the leg; and so on, each striving to 


give it a better stroke than the other. It would seem that 
they would make very clumsy attempts with their awkward 
heavy-soled shoes, but some are very agile in this sport, and 
the ball is kejDt bobbing over the heads of the players, some- 
times for several minutes, without falling to the ground. 

At night, the scene is brilliant. The lanterns cast their' 
many-colored rays, the tinsel decorations are transformed to 
real costly ornaments, and all the tawdr}' embellishments de- 
ceive the eye by their brilliancy and artistic appearance in the 
fancy light. The streets are not so crowded as during the 
day, but indoors all is life and gayety. There is feasting and 
playing; numerous simple amusements are heartily engaged 
in as a social pastime, and work and sleep are banished en- 
tirely from the scene. At one theatre, Act XLIX., Sceues 1st, 
2d, 3d, 4th, 5th, and 6th, of a wonderful historical drama, are 
being enacted by a company of brilliant performers, wherein 
is represented the costumes, manners and habits of the Chi- 
nese that were in vogue thousands of years ago, and that bear 
a striking resemblance to what is seen on the streets of San 
Francisco, in the Chinese quarter almost any day; at another, 
startling and dangerous acrobatic feats are witnessed by a 
large audience. The restaurants are thronged with hungry 
humanity, busily employed in analyzing the mysterious dishes 
of Chinese cookery; the opium dens are packed with dreamy 
idlers, and the gambling houses are filled with an eager crowd 
of sjDeculators in chance; while the most infamous places of all 
— the houses of ill-fame — are in their holiday finery, and reap- 
ing a holiday harvest. 

This is but a faint echo, a glimmer of what is heard and 
seen in Chinatown during the days and nights that are cele- 
brated at the beginning of each Chinese year. To picture the 
manner of celebrating this season, with the strange ceremonies 
that are observed, in detail, would require a volume. 


The Chinese do not die; they "pass from the world," "sa- 
lute the age," "cease to exist," or "ascend to the sky," but 
they never die. At least that is the way they express them- 
selves when speaking of the dead. Indeed, that is a very 
pretty way of alluding to the ' ' departure " of friends. It 
does not arouse those feelings of awe that are stirred by the 


simple bold utterance — "they are dead!" or if it does, the 
mantliDg of the meaning' by a poetic periphrase awakens other 
feelings that somewhat counteract the effect, that the sad news 
the words impart, would otherwise have. The burial cere- 
mony, however, departs from this delicacy of sentiment. 

One of the most inhuman customs that prevails with the 
Chinese is that of removing the dying to some out-of-the-way 
place, and abandoning them in their last moments. It is not 
an unfrequent occurrence in San Francisco to find a dead or 
dying Chinaman in some damp, dark, and deserted cellar or 
tenement house, where even the most filthy living would not 
remain a day. Sometimes they are discovered in the alleys 
where there is little or no travel. Chinese women are more 
frequently treated thus, inasmuch as the women are not held 
in such esteem as the men. But the friendless Chinese, male 
or female, have reason to dread the approach of death, for 
they are generally doomed to pass their dying hour unattended 
by sympathetic hands, amid dismal surroundings, and alone. 
This is due to the custom observed among them that the 
person at whose house any one dies must incur the funeral 
expenses, if the dead have no relatives. It is a popular belief 
■with them that if such person fails to provide for a suitable 
burial, the spirit of the dead will return and bring great 
trouble uj)on the house. Besides, there are ill omens con- 
nected with death, and none wishes to incur the risk of any 
evil visitations that a death at his abode might bring. Con- 
sidering how intelligent they are, it is very strange that such 
a custom would be heeded. This only shows how set they 
have become in everything regarding life; that they are con- 
trolled entirely by usages, established ages ago; that they are 
yet slaves to superstition. 

A Chinese funeral is conducted with the peculiar ceremonies 
so characteristic of the race. The burial rites vary. The cer- 
emonies at the burial of aged persons, or dignitaries, are very 
imposing from a Chinese view-point; but with the poor and 
friendless, and the young, there is not much formality ob- 
served. Young women and little children are carried to their 
last resting-place with scarcely any ceremonial observances 

At an ordinary funeral, such as is often witnessed in San 
Francisco, the body, after death, is first laid upon the floor 


for a sliort time. After it has been washed and dressed — the 
best suit always being used, or new garments entirely — it is 
then placed on the "longevity boards," (coffin) and covered 
with a white cloth. Tables are then set with provisions to feed 
the spirit of the deceased, and also to appease other spirits 
that are supjjosed to be hovering about. Some food is j)re- 
sented to the mouth of the dead by the eldest son (if there 
is one) or by the next nearest relative . There must be five 
kinds of animal food, cooked and uncooked, cakes, vegetables, 
fruit, wine and tea. Whole fowls and fish, and many times 
whole hogs are used at these occasions, having been roasted 
to a rich brown color, and ornamented fantastically. Then the 
moiu'ning women — sometimes hired and sometimes the rela- 
tives and friends of the deceased, or both — gather about the 
body, wailing and lamenting in most sorrowful tones. This 
mourning ceremony is made up of sobs and eulogies intermin- 
gled. Interspersed with the lamentations will be eulogistic 
sentences, and not unfrequently an extended speech will be 
sjDoken. These are either improvised or committed to mem- 
ory for the occasion. The latter, however, is generally the 
case; as they have many set formulas for the burial service. 
A common lament is of similar import to this: "0, thou, de- 
parted one, I am thy relative; this day hast thou suddenly 
deceased. My heart is torn because thou art no more. I 
will never more see thee, but I hope thy soul hath joy and peace 
— having ascended to the heavenly palace. Alas! Alas!" 
Sometimes drums and gongs are sounded, and fire-crackers 
exploded, to frighten ojff any evil spirits that may be around. 

The Chinese have no great fear of death, but the anxiety 
caused by the fear that they may not have a suitable coffin jDro- 
vided, wherein to repose during the long ages after death, is 
not a little. There is no more acceptable present to a father 
from a son, than a neat, substantial coffin. This is sacredly 
preserved until required for use by the owner, in the room set 
apart for the worship of ancestors, in which is also kej)t nu- 
merous remembrances of the dead, tablets with their names 
inscribed thereon, and sometimes lines corresponding very 
nearly to our epitaphs, telling of the virtues of the deceased. 

When these ceremonies have been completed, the body is 
placed in the coffin, and borne — in a hearse or wagon — to the 
cemeteiy, followed by a concourse of friends. The mourning 


women sometimes accompany the procession in carriages. "For 
this occasion tliey dress in white, wearing white hoods also. 
(White is the mourning color of the Chinese.) Bands of mu- 
sicians frequently accompany the cortege, but to the American 
notion of harmony, there is not much but discord in the harsh 
sounds they make with their instruments. All along the road 
or street to the burial ground, they strew strips of brown paper 
pierced in the centre in imitation of the Chinese coin money. 
This is "road money," being thus used to purchase the right 
of way. But with the Chinese, it represents certain value 
when thus used — as it is purchased for the funeral service 
from the priest or keeper of the Joss House, and is scattered 
broadcast along the route to buy off any bad spirits that might 
be lurking around to interfere with the spirit of the deceased, 
as it proceeded to the final home of the body it once occupied. 

At the grave, a rude table is prepared, and the food, which 
has also been brought, is again arranged, as a banquet to the 
spirit and spirit guests, in the same manner as it was at the 
house. Great quantities of the paper money is here strewn 
about, and much of it burned. A little furnace has been 
erected near the grave, and in it paper chests, toys, and some- 
times toy-servants are burned, representing the clothing and 
valuables of the deceased, thus sent on their journey to the 
celestial port where the spirit of the deceased no will be 
waiting to receive them. Sacred candles and incense sticks 
are set up in an earth-filled trough, and burned, and after the 
body has been deposited in the grave, and the damp clay 
heaped uipon it, shutting it in from mortal view forever, a few 
candles and incense sticks are placed on the fresh turned earth 
and lighted, some wine and tea is poured upon the ground to 
satisfy thirsty spirits, some of the food is also strewn about 
the graves, the remainder is gathered up and loaded into the 
wagon, and all who formed that queer concourse, except the 
body of the dead and the vagrant spirits, are rapidly driven 
back to the city, there to sate their mortal cravings by devour- 
ing the remnant of the feast that was prepared to appease the 
hunger of only immortal stomachs. 

These funeral banquets are often very expensive, especially 
when the deceased is very aged, wealthy, or is considered a 
man of great prominence among them. The funeral ceremo- 
nies are considerably extended at the burial of these. A 


marked difference is observed in the procession. One or two 
young men or boys are seen following the hearse clad very 
shabbily; their feet bare, each carrying a cane for support, 
and bowed down in the attitude of great grief. They are 
supported on either side by friends who lead them by the 
hand. These represent sons of the deceased; their attitude of 
mourning is emblematical of the crushing sorrow they feel; 
and their bare feet and tattered clothing, of their condition in 
life, by having been bereft of a protector. 

Fourteen days after the burial is a general mourning day, 
but the age and position of the dead changes the mourning 
ceremonies. Parents are most lamented. Offerings to their 
names are most abundant, and the anniversary of their death 
is longest remembered. There is very little mourning for the 
young; and for infants and girls, scarce a lament is uttered or 
a tear shed. But the memory of the revered and honored 
dead is perpetuated for years and even ages. 

The twenty -fourth day of the second month of the Chinese 
year (4th of April), is the period of the Tsing Ming — pure and 
resjilendent — festival . On this day there is nearly as much 
excitement in Chinatown as at the New Year festivities. Ac- 
cording to the Chinese belief, the gates of the tombs are thrown 
open on this day, and the spirits of all the dead come forth 
and visit the earth. "Wonderful feasts are prepared for these 
celestial inhabitants, and hacks and wagons throng the high- 
ways leading to the cemeteries, bearing all manner of food 
with which to make up a banquet. As many as one hundred 
hogs have been roasted whole, for this festival, and all the 
delicacies the living are fond of, are provided in abundance for 
the dead. Similar ceremonies are performed at the graves, as 
those observed at funerals. The graves are repaired; if there 
are any trees or shrubs, they are trimmed; and a general reno- 
vation of the tombs takes place. After the various ceremo- 
nies are done, they repair to the city, and a bounteous feast is 
spread, when all join in the repast. Such are some of the 
peculiarities of that race, the members of which, in San Fran- 
cisco, form one of the chief characteristics of the city. 


Although a Chinamen can subsist on veiy small rations, — 
a bowl of rice, a little meat or fish, and a cup of tea, supplying 


sx good working-day meal — there are no people in the world 
that enjoy eating more, or understand the art of preparing so 
great a variety of dishes, as the Chinese. Commonly, their 
habits are very economical; but when a feast is decided upon, 
they are lavish in expenditures, and apparently do not allow 
the thought of the cost of any desired article to trouble them, 
l)ut go straightway and secure it. It does not require an event 
of great note, to furnish an excuse for a banquet. The anni- 
versary of the oj)ening of a theatre, the arrival of a much loved 
Iriend, or any occasion of but inconsiderable importance is 
gl'ood cause to rejoice over, by a little extra eating and drink- 
ing. It not unfrequently transpires that a number of promi- 
nent American gentlemen of San Francisco, are invited guests 
to the dinners that are given by wealthy Chinese residents, in 
honor of the anniversary of some particular event. These are 
conducted in the most approved style of the Oriental aristoc- 
racy, and those who are the favored participants gain consid- 
erable insight into the table habits that prevail among the 
Jiigher class Chinese. The company is generally composed of 
the most intelligent Chinese and Americans, and is withal a 
very highly entertained and convivial assemblage. But every- 
thing pertaining to the banquet is cast in the oriental mould. 
There is no apparent attempt, on the j)art of the host, to imi- 
tate American customs or style, either in table etiquette or in 
the preparation of the food. The only departure from tradi- 
tional usage is substituting knives and forks for chop-sticks. 
The Chinese are well aware that experience in their use is 
necessary to render the handling of these at eating, at all sat- 
isfactoiy. So, in this they conform to the American custom. 

The banqiTct hall is generally one of the most aristocratic 
Chinese restaurants, located in the Chinese quarter of the city. 
The guests are received in the reception room, which is pro- 
vided with a number of small stands, upon which are arranged 
trays containing tiny cups and pots filled with a decoction of 
tea, cigars, tobacco and cigarettes. As the guests arrive, they 
are received by an English speaking Chinaman, who is as 
courteous and hearty in the greeting he offers them, as any 
well-bred gentleman should be. Immediately uj)on arrival, a 
cup of tea is drank and all sit down to enjoy a social chat and 
the fragrant fumes of choice cigars. Numerous Chinese guests 
are among the number present, most of whom converse in. 


English, and an hour is pleasantly passed in discussing various 
interesting topics. 

The main room where the table is spread, is gorgeously 
decorated in Oriental magnificence. Chinese lanterns of rich 
design are suspended from the ceiling and cast a warm glow 
over the room. When all are seated around the board, they 
are invited to partake of the relishes, that are temptingly ar- 
ranged before them. These consist of a great variety of vege- 
tables, nuts, etc., among which are usually found, sweet 
cucumbers, salted almonds, melon seeds, j)ickled duck, eggs 
and ginger, called respectively by the Chinese, qui ying, hum 
yung, quachee, alp tain and keong. There are also lai chi and 
lung ngaln, species of nuts grown in China, and lettuce, celery 
and radishes. While the company are sharpening their apj^e- 
tites with these, the waiters (who are numerous) bring to each 
a very small glass of a bright red colored liquor, inuo qui to, 
which is very pleasant to the taste. This is a spirituous bever- 
age, extracted from rice, and flavored with attar of roses. 

Bird's-nest souj) follows this, and after it course succeeds 
course until the stomach of a gourmand would be comi^elled 
to call out for rest, if every thing offered were eaten. Bird's- 
nest soup is a great delicacy with the Chinese. It is com- 
posed of a moss which birds use to build nests, ham, and the 
breast of chicken minced. ' ' The birds ' nests are obtained 
from Java, Sumatra, and the coast of Malacca. The nests are 
made of a delicate sea-moss, picked from the surface of the 
waves by a species of swallow. These birds build their nests 
upon precipitous cliffs, and the persons who gather them are 
let down from higher accessible points by ropes. When the 
nests are secured, they are well cleaned, packed, and sent to 
Canton, where they are worth their weight in silver. By the 
time they reach San Francisco they are worth their weight ia 

The next course may be a stew of China terrapin shells, fla- 
vored with onions and seasoned with water chestnuts — called 
by the Chinese san suey. This is followed by ki (on yu chee — 
sharks' fins stewed with ham and eggs; or len yue chee — roasted 
sucking pig, browned nicely; or chuen alp — boned duck, stewed 
with grated nuts, pearl barley and mushrooms; or fung hit sic 
gy — chicken, stewed with chestnuts ; or ho see — dried oysters 
"boiled. A later course may be fen gnon — or roast Cantonese 


goose ; or toon goo hak hop — tender mushrooms, with the one 
hundred layer leek; or Chinese quail — veiy like the Califor- 
nia ; or cum chin kye — brochettes of chicken hearts ; or kinn 
wah ham cha ho — California oysters fried in hatter, "with 
onions; ox fu yung chee — sharks' fins fried in batter; or sut 
yiie — pickled rock cod ; or cho coo hak hap moo goo — pigeon 
stewed with hundred layer leek and bamboo sprouts; or all, or 
each of these, and many others, following in almost endless 
succession. The dessert is very palatable, but except by the 
Chinese — who know how to apportion each course to the re- 
quirements of their appetites, and therefore get a share of each 
and everything that is served — it goes uneaten and almost un- 
tasted. It is a long series of fancy dishes, such as ha yuk kow 
chee — fancy rice cakes, made in imitation of birds and flowers; 
ki ton ko — egg cake; hong you mo — corn starch, flavored with 
almond; chawng — oranges; pinknon — apples; heong gav chew — 
bananas ; and po tie chee — grapes ; after which, cha — tea — is 
brought in small covered bowls, and served clear in very small 
china cups. 

Much that is set before the guests is insipid or offensive to 
the American taste, but so it is at any feast where a great 
variety is served. Some of the stews and roasts are remark- 
able for the fine flavor they retain after cooking, and the tea 
is superior to any that is prepared by other than heathen 
hands. The table ware is fine China pottery, and the cutlery 
is silver or heavy plate. Many dishes, on which certain kinds 
of food is served, are silver-plated. Instead of napkins, large 
white silk handkerchiefs are used. During dinner, the guests 
are agreeably entertained by the host and his assistants, and 
the hours pass pleasantlj^ away. The host apparently delights 
in explaining the various dishes, oftentimes entering into 
minute details of Chinese cookery. Beef and j)otatoes are 
seldom offered at a Chinese feast. The Chinese look upon the 
killing, and using for food, of cattle, or buffaloes, as a very 
great sin, as they are valuable for beasts of burden. There 
is a tradition among them that says "the killers of beef shall 
endure punishment in Hades after death. Some are tossed on 
knives, others on hills of swords. Some have red-hot iron 
poured down their throats, and others are tied to red-hot 
posts. Through the eternal ages, they shall not be born again, 
or, if they are, they become buffaloes. Butchers have hearts 


of iron, and those who raise buffaloes to kill for beef have 
hearts more wicked and fierce than wolves or tigers." To 
have potatoes for dinner is considered a sign of hardships and 
a mark of extreme poverty. 

A small oj)ium room makes off from the dining hall. This 
is furnished luxuriantly, and those who desire to indulge in 
the time-killing drug may thither repair after dinner is over, 
and reclining at ease on a soft-cushioned couch, pass from the 
realit}'^ of sp)lendid oriental surroundings into that dream-land 
where the heathen celestial so dehghts to roam — with the 
amber mouth-piece of a great sizzing opium pipe between his 
teeth, and a deathly jDalor on his face. 


John Chinaman, if he chooses so to do, can exist comfort- 
ably (in the Chinese sense of the word) for twelve months for 
the small expenditure of seventy-five or one hundred dollars. 
But this necessitates a strict observance of the rules of econ- 
omy. He dare not squander a cent for any luxury whatever — 
even his daily whiff of opium must not be thought of, and his 
clothes must be of the most inferior quality when new, and 
worn until they are extremely shabby. His food also must be 
simple; rice and potatoes constituting the bulk, with an occa- 
sional slice of pork or fish, and some plain green vegetables. 
He must be his own cook and do his own washing, which 
duty, however, is not arduous, inasmuch as the material in 
either case is very scant. Thus do many of the Chinese of 
California live, day after day, month after month, but seldom 
year after year, for usually during the first year they accumu- 
late some money, and learn the aii of increasing their capital 
more rapidly, so that they are enabled to expend more for 
food and raiment. So well do they understand how to make 
each cent extend their lease of life, that how they succeed in 
doing it is a matter of surprise and wonder to Americans. 
Ordinarily, a laboring Chinaman will spend about two hun- 
dred dollars a year for his living. His clothes during that 
time will cost him from twelve to eighteen dollai'S, and his 
board and lodging from two and one half dollars to tlu'ee per 
week. This will leave him some extra money for contingen- 
cies. If every Chinaman had a family to supjDort he would 
have to demand for his services a price nearer to that white 


laborers are compelled to ask, and therefore be would not be 
such a formidable competitor to meet. But in the whole 
Chinese population of the Pacific Coast States of America 
there are probably not more than three hundred men who 
have families. 

The persons who are so strongly opposed to having the 
Chinese among us may be content, for these already here to 
remain, if only they can succeed in having the immigration 
checked; for according to the natural order of things they 
will soon become extinct, because of not having the propa- 
gating element among them. 







THE Chinese of Sau Francisco have chosen well the terri- 
tory they occupy. Chinatown proper, that is, the por- 
tion of the city where the Chinese constitute almost the entire 
population, consists of sections of two blocks each of Sacra- 
mento, Clay, Washington, Jackson and Pacific Streets, between 
Kearny and Stockton Streets; and Dupont Street from Sacra- 
mento to Pacific Streets, the whole comprising about nine 
blocks. In this territory a few whites are to be found, engaged 
in some small business, but the Chinese have monopolized 
almost all the business rooms, as well as the residence houses, 
and only that it is in the Occident, is it distingniished from an 
Oriental city. The few white stragglers that are met upon the 
streets are scarcely more numerous than would be found in any 
open seaport town in China, and they gaze about them with 
the same curiosity as do those who are visiting for the first 
time the cities of the Celestial Empire. Thus, in San Fran- 
cisco, it is but a step from the monuments and living evidences 
of the highest tj'pe of American civilization, and of Christi- 
anity, to the unhallowed precincts of a heathen race, where 
unmistakable signs of a contrasting civilization, are seen on 
every side. 

From the day that "Wah Lee fiirst displayed his abbreviated 
sign, Wash'ng and Iron'ng over the door of his laundry in 
"Washington Street, Wah Lee, his brothers, and innumerable 
" cousins," have silently, gradually, and unceasingly continued 
to spread themselves out, over a larger area, until now they 
occupy exclusively, a number of blocks in what, would other- 
wise be, a choice business centre; besides having sent out 
thrifty tendrils that have taken fast hold in almost every block 
in the city. 


Any building adjacent to one occuiDied by Chinese, is ren- 
dered undesirable to white folks, and although the landlord may 
hold out inducements to white tenants and refuse any and all 
oflers from Chinese, heavy taxes and no income from the pro- 
perty, will soon convince him that John's money is preferable 
to no money at all, and he finally succumbs to the pressure, 
and John Chinaman has gained another foothold. When once 
they have planted themselves in a building, the Chinese 
rapidly take root; and although they do not manifest any 
stubborness by refusing to vacate the jd remises, experience 
proves that they make themselves masters of the situation, and 
are seldom dispossessed. They simply make the building un- 
inhabitable for decent white folk. Their manner of living ac- 
complishes this, without any extra precaution on their jjart. 
They will divide the rooms into numerous diminutive compart- 
ments by unsightly partitions, and the smoke and rank odor 
from their open fires and opium pipes, discolors the ceilings 
and walls and renders the whole building offensive, both to 
sight and smell, so that the expense of renovating it would not 
be offset by the rental receipts for six months or a year. Thus 
by degrees do they gradually increase their domain silently 
and peacefully, without any cause for blame other than the 
habits and style of life, that is simply the outgrowth of their 
strange civilization, and for the evil or of good which they as 
individuals are not responsible, 


Doubtless because of the overcrowded condition of the coun- 
try whence they come, the Chinese of San Francisco seem to 
think that America is likewise so densely populated, that every 
cubic foot of air must be economically utilized, and every inch 
of space profitably occuj)ied. A family of five or six j)ersons 
will occupy a single room, eight by ten feet in dimensions, 
wherein all will live, cook, eat, sleep, and perhaps carry on a 
small manufacturing business — apparantly comfortable, and 
show no signs of being cramped by the narrow limits that con- 
fine them. In the lodging houses (which are necessarily very 
numerous), they huddle together and overlay each other, like 
a herd of swine that seeks shelter in a straw-pile on a cold 
winter night. The rooms of a lodging house are usually about 
ten by twelve feet in size, with a ceiling from ten to fifteen feet 


high. On two sides of the room (and sometimes on eveiy side) 
bunks are placed one above another Hke those arranged in 
state-rooms of steamboats. In a room where the ceiling is of 
ordinary height there will be three or foiu' of these bunks on a 
single side. These are all occupied as beds for sleeping, from 
floor to ceiling. A small rental rate for each occupant, yields 
a considerable sum for the room; it is, therefore, easily com- 
prehended, how a Chinaman can afford to work for less wagea 
than a white man. 

Of an evening, the occupants of one of these small rooms,, 
gather about a common table in the centre, whereon burns a 
primitive oil taper, and indulge in a social game of chance, or 
light their opium and tobacco pipes, and what with smoking, 
gaming, and lounging on their bunks, they will pass a very- 
pleasant hour in social enjoyments. Perchance there may he 
one among the number who can lightly finger the guitar, flute, 
or violin; if so, the harsh strains of music, that are wafted in 
discordant waves on the sonorous air, together with the stifling 
odors from the burning weed and drug, dispels all care from 
the minds of the dreamy listeners, and in spirit they are borne 
hence to the home of their happy childhood; and again they roam 
among familiar fragrant bowers of their native " flowery land " 
— only returning to the realities of San Francisco life at being 
collared by a policeman for violating the " cubic feet of air " 
ordinance, who in commanding tones says, "John, too muchee 
Chinaman in little room! Come with me, I show jon." John 
remonstrates vociferously exclaiming " loom (room) all light 
(right) one — two — thlee (three) — Chinaman sleepee here (point- 
ing to the bunks) allee same Melican man sleepee — loom all 
light! " But John is carried off -to the city prison where he is. 
placed in closer quarters than he was in at his own peaceful 
domicile. But then the " pure air ordinance " is not supposed 
to apply to prisons, jails, and hospitals. 

In the shops and stores the same disposition to utilize all 
space is manifest, and at the laundries it is really wonderful 
what heaps and piles of dirty linen and queer dressed China- 
men can be accommodated. A space in a wall of no greater 
dimensions than a large dry goods box furnishes ample room 
for a cigar stand ; and a cobbler will mend your shoes in an 
area window, or on an unused door step. Nothing goes to 
•waste. Even the oxygen in the air is totally exhausted by re- 


peated inhalings. The wonder is that the whole Chinese popu- 
lation is not carried off, as by the breath of a native simoon, 
by some epidemic disease. But strange to say, there is no 
more sickness among the Chinese, who live year after year in 
their close quarters and accumulating filth, than among the 
whites, who by every precaution recommended by science en- 
deavor to ward off disease. 

In Chinatown there is not a basement, cellar, area, dormi- 
toiy, porch, loft, garret, or covered court, but teems with 
healthy Chinese inhabitants, night and day. The side-walks 
are monopolized by them, with their little tables of fruits, nuts, 
and cigars; the cobbler, tinner, chair-mender, and jack-of-all- 
trades, claim, by squatter right, a seat upon a box or door-sill, 
where to ply their trades; the alleys, lanes, and by-ways give 
forth dense clouds of smoke from the open fires, where cook- 
ing is performed, and the house-tops are white with drying 
garments, fluttering from the net-work of clothes-lines that 
are placed thereon by enterprising laundi'ymen. Even across 
narrow streets lines are thrown, upon which are placed to dry 
all manner of wearing apparel. 


There are few of the Chinese of San Francisco that own 
the premises they occupy. Few come to this country with the 
expectation of remaining permanently. This, with the fre- 
quent outbreaks among the white population against their 
presence and further Chinese immigration, very naturally pre- 
vents them from making investments in property that they 
cannot carry away at short notice, or readily dispose of at its 
full value. Therefore there are not many buildings erected by 
the Chinese, and the absence of the quaint Chinese architect- 
ure is remarked, where naught but Chinamen are seen upon 
the streets or in the houses, and every other surrounding is so 
suggestive of "Cathay." The additions they frequently make 
to houses, together with the signs, placards, and various gaudy 
ornaments with which the outer walls, windows, and doors, 
are bedizened, almost conceal the architectural style of the 
buildings; but when the attention is called to it, the handi- 
work of the Caucasian mechanic is discovered through the 
semi-transformation, and the delusion that this is an oriental 
city, in the Orient, is dispelled. Although when the business 


"blocks in Chinatown are completed, and turned over to the 
disposal of the proprietors, there are in them capacious store- 
rooms, light and airy, the Chinese occupants soon dispense 
•with this luxury of ample room and good ventilation, by di- 
viding them up into small compartments and stalls, leaving 
scarcely room enough for their customers to comfortably make 
their purchases. There is not one well appointed store-room 
in Chinatown, according to the American notion of shop- 
keeping. The}^ are all crowded with goods, from floor to 
ceiling; naiTow counters, with scarce room enough for the 
salesman to pass to and fro behind them, are the rule, and 
rude shelves suspended from the ceilings, loaded with all 
manner of merchandise, obstruct the view and render the 
whole incommodious. But yet there is much order in the 
arrangements. Every article is kept in its particular place, 
and in all the ap];)arent confusion there is complete system. 
"Whatever is desired from package or shelf, is readily found — 
each attendant knowing just where to put hands upon it. 

The show-windows are very poorly kept. They are used 
more for the store room they afford than for display. A mis- 
cellaneous variety of wares, indicating, somewhat, the stock-in- 
store, are placed in view from the street, but with little refer- 
ence to artistic or attractive arrangement. Two or three firms 
often occupy the same room, engaged in entirely different 
branches of trade; each, of course, confining itself to certain 
defined space, and all working together in the utmost har- 
mony. There are few merchants that are engaged in what we 
call exclusive trade, excepting the large tea and rice dealers; 
they nearly all carry a general stock. The business places of 
the money-changers and bankers partake somewhat of the dig- 
nity that attaches to our banking establishments, but the same 
disposition to economize space is manifested alike with them. 
Indeed, in whatever business or mechanical industry we find 
the Chinaman, he is hedged in on every side by his wares, so 
closely, that it seems impossible for him to accomplish any- 
thing; and were it not for the real evidences resulting from his 
efforts, that show for themselves, we would believe that his 
whole time was spent in planning how to reduce his living ne- 
cessities, how matter may exist without occujoying sj^ace, and 
how life may be sustained without food, clothing, and air. 



In passing through the Chinese quarter of San Francisco, 
we are not aware of the variety of wholesome "food for reflec- 
tion " that an intelligent Chinaman finds in those, to us, incom- 
prehensible characters that stand out so boldly, in gilt and 
black and red, on the many sign-boards and cards, over the 
doors, on the window-frames, and on the door-facings of the 
various shops and houses walling the street. Indeed, we are 
disposed to think our Chinese interpreter jesting, when he 
translates the meaning of some of the signs into our own lan- 
guage; and we very naturally reverse the old saying, "there is 
more truth than poetry in this;" so that our reflections may be 
expressed in the transposed sentence, there is more jpoe^r^/ than 
truth in their significance. 

Some of the signs are in English letters, and read as follows: 
Shun Wo, Wung Wo Shang, Hang Hi; but we pause to con- 
sider, when we are told that the warning words Sfiu7i Wo, 
according to the heathen understanding, express Faith and 
Charity — the very things that above all else we should be 
familiar with and practice, instead of shun. Hang Hi ! When 
these simple words meet our gaze, our imagination reveals to us 
in vivid outline, "two posts a-stand-ent, a beam across-ent, a 
rope suspend-ent, and (perhaps) a Chinaman on the end-ent," 
and a reasonable conclusion is, that within is the sacred tem- 
ple of Justice. Our surprise is therefore considerable, when 
we learn that Hang Hi is " the ssgrn of prosperity." Likewise, 
our active brain misled our reason,Vhen, because of the words 
Sing, Sang, Sung, occurring over the door of a modest little 
building, we at once remarked to our companion, that "there 
is the strongest evidence of true civilization — the school-house, 
wherein is nurtured and cultivated the germ of power." By 
seeing those words — the different forms of the verb sing — 
memories of our childhood days, and the hard struggles we 
had passed through in the vain endeavor to learn the rules of 
conjugation, comparison, etc., were awakened, and we imme- 
diately concluded that this was a grammar school. 

Forgetting the possibility of a misapplication of these mot- 
toes, there is a poetic beauty in them that becomes quaint 
from peculiar association. Over the doors of the wholesale 
houses may be seen, Kioong On Gheang — extensive peace and 
affluence; Hip Wo — mutual help and concord; Tm Yuk — 


heavenly jewel; Tung Cheung — unitedly prospering; Man Li 
— ten thousand profits; and Yan On Cheung — benevolence, 
peace, and affluence. 

The apothecaries display, besides their regular sign, "The 
hall of aj)proved medicines of every province and of eveiy 
land," various other signs, suggesting the good results ob- 
tained from the use of their medicines, as, "The hall of ever- 
lasting spring;" "Hall of relief;" "Live forever;" and "Great 
life hall." Doctors announce on their doors and windows 
that the}^ will ' ' cure disease by feeling of the pulse and pre- 
scribing proper mdicines," near by which may be seen "health 
and strength." 

The clothing stores show a sign "new clothes, shoes, stock- 
ings, and caps," and the motto or name of the shop may be 
"Union and peace;" or "Elegant and ornamental." 

The restaurants give their mottoes as spicy a flavor as possi- 
ble. In addition to the common restaurant sign — "Man- 
chou and Chinese animal and vegetable food, by the meal; 
with wine, diversions, and entertainments" — is seen the tempt- 
ing notice, "Fragrant almond chamber," "Chamber of the 
odors of distant lands," "Garden of the Golden Valley," or 
"Balcony of joy and delight." 

The butcher is no less poetical, for, after announcing that 
he is prepared to furnish ready roasted, the "golden hog," he 
indulges in the ennobling sentiments: "Virtue, harmony, and 
constant faith." 

"Let each have his due," says the red sign over the base- 
ment entrance, where the pawn-broker keeps his curiosity- 
shop, and the cigar dealer bids all to come to the " Fountain 
of Kighteousness" and "Fountain of the most Excellent," 
whilst across the way, at the lottery, is the extraordinary an- 
nouncement, " Winning Hall — to be lucky is to be happy." 

Thus the poetic vein runs through every department of 
trade, whether reputable or disreputable. The red paj)er- 
sign at the gambling house bids all to " get rich." "Come in, 
the skin is spread > straight enter the winning doors." In 
the business houses, various signs are pasted on the walls. 
Some similar to what is seen in many stores kept by Ameri- 
cans: " One price to all;" "Honest goods and honest men," 
etc. At the residence houses also are pasted in conspicuous 
places, sometimes very sensible and appropriate mottoes, such 


as "Domestic harmony is domestic bliss;" "Peace and happi- 
ness is here," and "Discord bringeth strife." 

All this would seem to be antagonistic to the nature of this 
practical people, hutit is custom. Educated men are frequently 
consulted with regard to these mottoes and signs, so as to have 
them as appropriate as possible. A sort of religious ceremony 
is performed, when a sign is placed in position — a dedicatory 
service, wherein the signs are blessed, and blessings and pros- 
perity are invoked for the establishment. 







THE Chinese are proverbially industrious and enterprising. 
The dashing enterprise that characterizes the American 
— the reckless spirit that pushes out so boldly to win all or 
lose all — is not seen in the Chinese; but that constant plod- 
ding and dogged perseverance that progresses "slow but sure," 
is their distinguishing trait. In whatever capacity they are 
employed, they are as regular as clock-work. There is no 
flurry and worry with them; no irregular cogwheels in their 
mechanism, that causes them to go by fits and starts; but day 
after day, week after week, and year after year, they pursue 
evenly and systematically their calling. 

When a laborer is told what he is required to do, and what 
remuneration he will receive therefor, if he accepts the terms, 
he will do that much and no more; but his employer must 
likewise be as exact in performing his part of the agreement. 
As an eight-day clock will cease to mark the time at the end of 
eight days, unless the "winding up " process is promptly per- 
formed, so certainly will a Chinaman cease to perform any 
work he has agreed to do, unless he receives his pay j^romptly 
at the appointed time. He seems to fully understand how 
much he can endure, and he therefore will work so fast and no 
faster. He is regular in his habits, arising and retiring, eating 
and resting, each day at regular hours, with extreme precision. 
Indeed, there is no variation in his conduct from day to day; 
his labor, his rest, and his life is rendered as monotonous as 
though he were a simple machine, passionless, and j^ropelled 
by an unintelligent motor. This faithfulness makes him valu- 
able as a laborer, and therein is the secret of his preferment 
by capital. 


The Chinese do not indulge in speculative business where 
there is much risk, to any great extent; but so persistent are 
they in anything they undertake, that they seldom fail of suc- 
cess. They follow the maxim "live within your means, etc.," 
and when once established in any business that yields an ordi- 
nary profit, time is only wanting to bring to them wealth. In 
San Francisco there are few that make money rapidly, but 
many are on the highway to fortune. In fact, almost every 
healthy Chinaman on the Coast is engaged in some business 
that will eventually lift him above dependence, unless unfor- 
seen misfortune should come upon him. The great drain upon 
their resources — and what keeps many of them in imj)Overished 
circumstances — is the aged relatives at home, to whom they feel 
it is their most sacred duty to give their earnings. So great 
is their devotion to them that they deny themselves every lux- 
ury, and many times curtail the expense for the actual neces- 
saries of life, that they may thereby place and teep their aged 
kindred in comfortable circumstances. 


Apparently, it is as natural for a Chinaman as a Jew to 
engage in some mercantile pursuit. Buying, selling and trad- 
ing is their national characteristic, and it seems to be the chief 
ambition of the Chinese of San Francisco to establish them- 
selves in some business involving traffic and trade. Shop- 
keeping seems to be their favorite occupation; but if they are 
unable to maintain a "fixed " establishment, they can generally 
raise funds enough to stock a peddling-basket, and instead of 
sitting back on their dignity, awaiting patronage, choose a 
route, and by going from door to door find enough customers 
to gratify their mercantile desire, and perhaps j'ield them a 
small surplus besides. We therefore find many of them en- 
gaged in peddling various fancy China articles, boots and 
shoes, vegetables and fish, throughout the entire city, even 
into the sparsely populated suburbs, besides the great number 
of merchants and tradesmen in the centre of the "Chinese 

To a stranger, the vegetable and fish markets in the city, at 
early morning, is a most peculiar and interesting spectacle. Be- 
sides the Italian huckster-wagons that almost block the streets, 
the Chinese peddlers, with their baskets or panniers suspended 


from either end of a bamboo pole, tlirong the street, the walks, 
and the stalls, in confusing numbers. All are anxious to be 
off on their oft' trod routes, and the havoc that they make of 
the vegetables and fish, is only equalled b}^ their merciless 
slaughter of the "Queen's English." The variety of vegeta- 
bles they requu'e makes the scene more confusing; for they are 
hurrying hither and thither, taking a few pounds of this, a 
bunch of that, and a box of another kind, all the while keep- 
ing up an incessant jabber amongst themselves, as well as 
constantly repeating the query, " how muchee you sell him?" 
And then, too, how skillfully they arrange their stock in the 
capacious baskets! There are trays, boxes, and bags, ai:)pa- 
rently thrown in without any reference to classification, but 
placed with wonderful comj)actness. When the supply is ob- 
tained, and everything arranged in order, ihey stoop and place 
their shoulder beneath the pole, and, after a trial or two, suc- 
ceed in balancing it, when away they go, at a rapid, swinging 
gait, puffing and panting, but never slacking their pace. Some 
of these peddlers, when they start out on their rounds, carry 
as much as one hundred and fifty pounds. After they have 
reached their first customer, the weight graduall}^ decreases, 
until by noon, or shortly after, they have almost, if not en- 
tirely, exhausted their stock, and they return to their rooms or 
lodging-places, almost fainting from fatigue. Many of them 
obtain their supply of vegetables from the Chinese vegetable 
gardeners in the suburbs of the city. There is probably no 
city in the world where families obtain their vegetables and 
fish with as little trouble as in San Francisco. Each vegeta- 
ble vendor has his regular customers, and if he fails to tap on 
the kitchen door any day in the year except Sunday, it is gen- 
erally because he has abandoned himself to the holida}' festiv- 
ities, or has been stricken down by a vicious hoodlum. 

The New Year's greeting of the Chinese, "get rich, get 
rich ! " is significant of the universal desire with them to make 
money. Their sole object in coming to this country is to 
make money. The getting of many "trade dollars" is their 
chief ambition in life. Therefore, the}' are not very particular 
as to the kind of business they engage in, so long as it yields 
them a profit; and although, as we have said, their choice of 
occupations seem to be the mercantile pursuit, they do not 
hesitate to abandon the notion of being proprietors of a cigar 


stand, a store, or a pair of peddler's baskets, if anything more 
lucrative is pointed out to them. For house servants and for 
laundry-work, they cannot be excelled. 

There are, perhaps, more Chinese engaged in the laundry 
business in San Francisco than in any other kind of labor. 
Their "wash-houses" are seen in every portion of the city, 
and in the more populous parts, from two to four such estab- 
lishments are found in each block. Besides these that are 
operated by Chinese exclusively, nearly all the hotels, and 
many of the public institutions that have a laundry attached, 
employ them to conduct that department. An example of how 
they apply the rules of economy to any and everything they 
engage in, is furnished in a system that prevails among the 
laundrymen, by which the item of shop rent is reduced to very 
small proportions. Two wash firms will occupy the same 
premises and use the same tubs, irons, etc., one firm working 
during daylight, and at night surrendering the shop to the 
other, who occupy and use it until morning. By this system, 
a great saving of fuel and water is also effected, and the econ- 
omy of co-operation is proven beyond question. The Chinese 
are better ironers than washers. They seem to think that if a 
garment is crimped, fluted, puffed, or polished, properly, a 
few stains or grease spots will be passed without notice; but 
when their patrons are particular to give positive instructions 
to have their clothes washed well, as well as starched and 
ironed, the desired whiteness is generally obtained. 

Many of the Chinese laundries do a large amount of work, 
"but whether their business is great or small, they never em- 
ploy a wagon for collecting or delivering clothes. In collect- 
ing the clothes, they simply tie them up in a sheet, throw the 
Taundle over their shoulder, and carry it to the shop; but in 
delivering, more care is necessary, and a large basket is used, 
-wherein the glossy garments are neatly placed, and protected 
from dust by a covering of cloth. 

About the year 1851, there was a local item inserted in one 
of the city papers, which read as follows : ' ' Much excitement 
was occasioned in the city last week by the reduction of the 
price for washing, from eight dollars to five dollars a dozen. 
There is now no excuse for our citizens to wear soiled or col- 
ored shirts. The effect of the reduction is already manifest; 
and tobacco-juice spattered bosoms are no longer the fashion." 


The Chinese had not, at that early period, monopolized the 
laundry business. To-day, a family of five or six jjersons can 
have their washing and ironing done for one dollar and fifty 
cents per week, notwithstanding we have an oppressive water 

As house servants, there are a very large number of China- 
men employed. Families with small incomes, who, under the 
same circumstances in the Eastern States, would not think of 
emi^loying helj^, have a " China boy" to wash dishes, sweep, 
scrub, and do all manner of small tasks that are annoying and 
wearing on the good housewife. Gradually these boys are 
introduced into the kitchen to aid in the cooking, and in a few 
months from the first lesson, the whole family will enjoy their 
m.orning nap while the Chinese servant prepares the morning 
meal. Boys between twelve and eighteen years of age are 
only too glad of an opportunity to learn " Melican talk," and 
how to do " Melican's work." It is good capital for them, 
and to acquire it they will work for fifty cents a week and 
board, for a few months, and at the end of a year will not de- 
mand much extra pay; though when they become accomplished 
servants, either as cooks, or in general housework, their serv- 
ices command good pay. First class Chinese servants receive 
from twenty -five to forty dollars a month, according to the 
amount of work they are to perform. 

Although the Chinese of the present day are not an ingen- 
ious or inventive people, they are quick to learn how to oper- 
ate all kinds of machinery. They are therefore numerously 
employe^ in nearly all the manufactories, especially in capaci- 
ties where the labor is light. As cigar-makers, they are won- 
derfully expert. The manufacture of cigars is almost confined 
to them, and they have nearly entire control of the cigar trade. 
This is a large item in the industries of California, and gives 
employment to a great number of workmen. The greater part 
of cheap clothing, boots, shoes, and slippers ; shirts, ladies' 
underwear, cheap furniture, and a great variety of tinware, is 
manufactured by the Chinese. Many of the factories are con- 
ducted by them, and in every branch of mechanical industry 
Chinamen are employed. 


As an instance of the imitative ability of the Chinese, it has 
been related that the captain of a vessel lying at Hongkong 
had on board his shi^) a fine painting, that by accident had 


been injured by a rent across its face. Learning of the imita- 
tive skill of the Chinese painters, he had the rent sewn tip, and 
delivered the painting to one of them to have him paint an ex- 
act copy of it. In due time the work was completed, when, to 
his amazement, the Captain discovered that the artist had been 
so faithful as to follow copy with minute exactness — having 
imitated the stitching and rent so successfully as to require a 
close examination to distinguish any difference in the two pict- 
ures. This is possibly a truthless tale, but it forcibly illus- 
trates a peculiarity of the Chinese, that is recognized in almost 
everything they do. 

The housewife who employs a Chinaman, must — for once, 
at least — do her work exactly as she desires him to do it, or 
she will many times regret the day she undertook to instruct 
a "heathen Chinee." Every article of furniture must be in 
the place she wants it kej^t on the day he takes his first lesson, 
for he does not fail to note the relative position of the smallest 
thing. At such times it will not do to have the broom leaning 
against the mirror, the wash basin on the dining table, or the 
comb and hair brush upon the flour bin. Any little mistake 
she then makes will breed a hundred ghosts to haunt her in 
the future, for he is just "heathenish" enough to place things 
as he finds them, and do everything as he has been shown. 

It is remarkable how aj)t they are. It seems natural for 
them to be able to comprehend what is required of them with- 
out any great effort. In mechanics, in housework, and in 
agriculture, they manifest the same quick perception. This is 
•why they so soon compete with white workmen. It requires 
sometimes an apprenticeship of years for a Caucasian to be 
able to master a trade, whereas a Chinaman seems to compre- 
hend it at once, and only needs a few weeks or months to 
familiarize himself with its intricacies. Their education seems 
to have given them a knowledge of the rudiments of almost 
every dejDartment of industrial labor, both body and mind 
apparently having been trained in the first principles, so tliat 
with a little practical instruction, they can go forward in any 
kind of work just as though they had been specially trained 
for it. 


In the "Chinese quarter" of San Francisco, there are many 
Chinamen engaged in various pursuits that are encouraged and 


supported by Chinese only. The Chinese merchant is patron- 
ized by the white population as well as by his swarthy brother. 

The laundrymen depend entirely upon the whites, and so it 
is with most of the manufactories. But it is very seldom that 
a white man eats at a Chinese restaurant, is shaved or shorn 
by a Chinese barber, or purchases his steak, chops, or sausages 
at a Chinese meat market. 

A Chinese restaurant does not differ essentially from an 
Italian, French, or American, in appearance. Some of them, 
however — and it aj^pears to be the rule — have a small balcony 
in front, in the construction and ornamentation of which is 
displayed about the only examples of Chinese architecture that 
is seen in the city. Large Chinese lanterns are suspended 
from the ceiling of this balcony, and every exposed part of 
the architecture shows many strange ornaments and much 
flashy tinsel. The predominating color is red, and it is lav- 
ishly put on. Inside are numerous small tables aiTanged in 
the same order as at common public dining halls. The kitchen 
is in some cramped hall or room in the building, at the rear of 
the restaurant. In various parts of the house are seen numer- 
ous employees of the restaurant engaged in the different dej^art- 
ments of cookery — some paring and washing vegetables, others 
mixing up dainties or j^reparing tit-bits, and still others around 
a huge range superintending the final j^i'ocess of cooking. 
Every dish that is in course of preparation, seems to have 
been chopped and minced so fine that after it has been cooked 
mastication will be unnecessary. A savory odor, not the least 
unpleasant, pervades the room, and no doubt floats into the 
street and temjDts many a hungry Chinaman to squander a few 
"bits" for his stomach sake. At meal time, when the tables 
are surrounded by the guests, there is much "good cheer" 
among them, and judging from the tone of the noisj^ talkers, 
there is a free expression of opinion as to the quality of the 
dishes of which they partake. They do not eat in such haste 
as do many of the business men who patronize the United 
States Restaurant or Campi's, and they seem to thoroughly 
enjoy their meals. 

The barber-shops are very numerous. The sign (a four- 
legged frame i)ainted, green, with red knobs or balls on the 
top of each leg, and exactly like the stands or frames the bar- 
bers use for suj)porting their wash-bowls) is even more fre- 
quently met than the liquor saloons along the business streets, 


not in the "Chinese quarter." The barbers generally occupy 
basement rooms. A bench along one side of the room, a com- 
mon chair or stool, upon which the victim of the blade sits, 
a wash-stand and bowl, constitute the visible furniture; but 
when the artist brings out his case of operating tools, they are 
so numerous and dangerous looking, and he wields them with 
such skill, that the timid visitor who has not yet learned that 
when a Chinaman looks most savage, he is in his pleasantest 
mood, hastily decides that notwithstanding the furniture is 
very scant, there is no room left for him. 

The shaving process is very lengthy, inasmuch as there is a 
large surface to go over. Every atom of the skin, from the 
shoulders up, is shaved, scrajoed, washed and polished, except 
a small patch on the crown of the head, from which the queue 
or tail depends. The queue is also combed out, washed, and 
thoroughly oiled, and again braided. The eyelashes are 
trimmed, scraped, and sometimes tinted, and nose and ears 
are probed and scraped, so that when a Chinaman emerges 
from a barber-shop, after having passed through the ordeal of 
being shaved, he may rest assured that he is clean — "above the 
shoulders." The baxber-shops are well patronized, for every 
Chinaman considers it a religious duty to have this operation 
performed upon him frequently. 

A Chinese meat-market, although perhaps a legitimate street 
exliibition in China-town, is a repulsive show. It might be 
unjust to compare it with our own slaughter-houses on a warm 
day, but it is certainly a disgusting and offensive scene. For 
aught we know there may not be anything in the whole dis- 
play but would be palatable to delicate tastes, if properly 
served at the dining table, but the manner in which the meats 
are haggled and exposed to view is shocking to refined natures. 
Pork constitutes the greater part of the stock, but it would be 
difficult to recognize one's own pet pig after it had passed over 
the dissecting-block of a Chinese butcher-shop. They seem 
to have no idea of the anatomy of the animal. With their 
beavy cleavers they cut and slash indiscriminately, apparently 
ignorant of the process of disjointing. The choicest morsels 
are so hacked and bruised that they are offensive to look upon. 
The walls, and floor of the shop are besmeared with blood, 
grease, and fragments of flesh, and everything about the 
premises looks jumbled and out of place. There is a perfect 


net-work of poles and lines overhead, upon wliicli hang all 
kinds of remnants from the block, in every stage of drj-ing (it 
might be better to say putrefaction). 

If the fish and fowl that are seen at every meat-market were 
removed to separate stalls they would form an attractive and 
tempting display, as the Chinese are veiy skillful in preserv- 
ing this class of food. Oysters, shrimps, ducks, geese, and a 
great variety of wild game and shell-fish, are cured in such a 
manner as to retain their fine flavor, and keep any length of 
time. They are remarkably fond of chickens, so much so, 
indeed, that it is not an uncommon occurrence for them to 
disturb a suburban roost at the earliest crowing of the cock. 

In the meat-markets and in many of the stores they use for 
■weighing, the most primitive kind of scales. The old-fashioned 
steel-yards that used to be be seen hanging on the wall of 
every well-ordered country " smoke-house," were much supe- 
rior to the wooden and iron beams used by the Chinese. 


The Chinaman is ever under the vigilant eye of the tax- 
gatherer. He is met on the street corner by the poll-tax col- 
lector, who calls out in a commanding voice, "John, you give 
me two dollars, and I give you receipt" — or "John, j^ou show 
me receipt." If he has not yet paid his tax, John soon pro- 
duces the two dollars, and after receiving a receipt folds it up 
neatly and places it in some mysterious receptacle or pocket, 
and the next time he is called upon by the collector — no mat- 
ter if it be in the mines of Nevada — that identical receipt will 
be produced as proof that he has paid his tithe. Again that 
voice is heard at the ferry-slips, as John is hurrying aboard the 
boat, starting on a journey to the interior in search of a job — 
"John, you got receipt?" and straightway to that hidden 
pocket go the nimble fingers of John Chinaman, and the re- 
ceipt is brought forth. As he is stepj)ing aboard the eastern 
bound train, across the bay, his blanket in one hand and bag 
of provisions in the other, that ever-present voice is again 
heard — "John, le' me see receipt;" and the receipt is again 
produced. So persistent are the collectors, that John seldom 
escapes, and if he be so unfortunate as to lose his receipt, he 
■will be compelled to replenish the public treasury by a second 
payment. He jaays it, however, without a scowl, and goes on 


Ms way apparently rejoicing that "it is as well with him as 
it is." 

The Chinese are very punctual in paying taxes, licenses, and 
all just jDublic demands; but when the municipal authorities, 
just for variety's sake, indulge in a little legislation specially 
aimed at the pocket of the heathen, they generally avail them- 
selves of the Yankee's argument, "Why?" have the matter 
tested in the courts, and if victorious, as they commonly are, 
liide their faces in their broad sleeves and laugh over their 
success. It is almost a pity that the Chinese of San Fran- 
cisco are not more conversant with English, for they have 
never yet been able to comprehend the joke in the city ordi- 
nance, said to have been passed some time since, but was 
declared void, and had to be reconstructed and re-enacted, 
because of its peculiar reading — which was similar to the fol- 
lowing: "All persons are forbidden to carry baskets upon 
sidewalks suspended from poles. Any violation of this ordi- 
nance shall be punished by a fine, et cetera." 

An idea of the wealth of some of the Chinese merchants may 
be gained from the assessment roll. There are about twenty- 
five firms and individuals who are assessed for sums varying 
from five thousand dollars to twenty-five thousand dollars each- 
Among them are Kwong On Chong, assessed for ten thousand 
dollars; Chy Lung & Co., twelve thousand dollars; Li Po Tai, 
seven thousand dollars; Tong Wo & Co., fifteen thousand dol- 
lars; AVing Wo Sang & Co., twenty-two thousand five hun- 
dred dollars; Tuck Chong & Co., twenty-three thousand dol- 
lars, and Wing Chong Wo & Co., nine thousand dollars. This 
assessment is only for personal property. Several of the lead- 
ing Chinese merchants are reputed to be worth from two to 
five hundred thousand dollars. The prominent business men 
among them are considered fair dealers and enjoy a good busi- 
ness reputation. According to their rules of business, failing 
to promptly meet all liabilities is a great discredit, and they 
are therefore very punctual in paying their debts. 







N the early evening, when Kearny Street is teeming with 
gay life, the streets in the "Chinese quarter," are likewise 
thronged with restless humans. But there is a striking con- 
trast in the two scenes. Kearny Street is brilliantly lighted 
from thousands of burners and reflectors in the windows of the 
shops and stores. The faces of the persons that throng this 
thoroughfare are expressive of happy hearts and pleasant 
thought, and the voices that are heard ring out in merry tones; 
the air is fresh and sweet, and every surrounding is indicative 
of refinement, comfort, happiness and prosperity. But in 
Chinatown, only a few blocks away, the streets and narrow 
lanes are mantled in dismal gloom. In the narrow and cur- 
tained windows, puny lamps feebly flicker, and from out the area 
windows, from halls, doorways and every opening in the walls, 
there come dense clouds of odorous smoke, blinding to the eyes 
and offensive to the nostrils. Noisesome vapors fill the air with- 
out and within, and all is gloom and shadow. The faces that 
are seen look ghastly in this gloom, expressionless and semi- 
savage; and the voices that break the quiet of the night are 
hideous and startling. There are awkward groups of awkward 
humans about the doorways and upon the walks, gossiping in 
guttural tones, or blankly gazing at the passer-by; there are 
crowds moving in and out the houses, or passing to and fro on 
the streets; and there are listless idlers lolling upon the curb or 
against the walls, perhaps dreaming of crime and heathen de- 
baucheiy. There is no animation, no joyous exclamations, no 
innocent hilarity, no vigorous life, in this motley scene. There 
is a sort of sluggish activity, but every phase of j)leasure or 
happiness that comes to the siirface, is subdued into sickliness. 


Were it not for the sounds of life that strike the ear, the imagi- 
nation could easily transform these moving figures into the 
phantom host that watches and waits about the portals of hell, 
and the smoke and vapor that here rise, into the smoke of 
torment that ascends forever and forever from the fervid fires 
in that baleful region. 

Such is the general appearance of the streets of Chinatown 
at night; and when every other part of the city has settled 
down to repose, and the footsteps of belated stragglers and 
policemen on their beats alone are heard, the same monoto- 
nous sounds continue to arise from the Chinese quarter, the 
same gloom hovers over it, and the same tableaux of life is 
being enacted, even continuing until the first morning hours; 
for among the Chinese are many night-workers. 


Gambling seems to be the besetting sin of the Chinese. It 
is practiced almost universally among them, and they go about 
it with a recklessness that does not accord with their usual safe 
business habits. They will stake their last cent upon the 
game, even pawn articles of clothing, and, in extreme cases, 
pledge their future services for advance money for gambling. 

They have various games of chance, played with cards, dice, 
dominoes, and other devices. The game of "tan" is the 
favorite betting game. It corresponds, in many respects, very 
nearly to the popular American game of Faro, and possesses- 
even more fascination for the heathen than does the latter for 
the sporting white gentry. The rules of the game are known 
only to the initiated Chinese; as none but Chinamen are ever 
admitted to the gambling-room. 

Until the recent excitement over Chinese immigration, there 
were not less than one hundred and fifty Chinese gambling- 
houses in the city; but the agitation of that subject directed 
public attention to this vice, and the police force have either 
suppressed all these games, or driven them into profound 
secrecy. They guard their gambling-houses so well, that the 
best-planned raids upon them by the police have been unsuc- 

Every person entering the gambling-houses has to pass 
through three strong doors, each of which is guarded by a 
stalwart Chinaman, who communicates any suspicious move- 


ments on the outside to the players within, and it is therefore 
almost an imj)ossibilitj to effect an ingress before the gam- 
blers disperse. From each gambling-room there are numerous 
secret passages leading to other buildings and the street, and 
at the first sound of alarm given by the sentinel guarding the 
outer door, the room is vacated, and when the officers arrive 
there is nothing visible about the premises to indicate that a 
game had been in oi^eration. A few of the Chinese gamblers 
have been arrested, but inasmuch as their conviction has 
almost always dejDended upon the evidence of their countiy- 
men, their punishment has been mild, or they have been 
acquitted for lack of sufficient proof. 

A Chinaman does not hold hi^ oath very sacred; at least, 
the exj)erience of judges and juries suggests this belief. Few 
of them hesitate to commit deliberate perjury. They will tes- 
tify for the interest of the person concerned, who has the 
most powerful influence over them. Thus it is a difficult mat- 
ter to administer justice among them. 

It is very possible that gambling is still carried on in the 
Chinese "quarter" to nearly the same extent as when there 
was little attempt made to conceal the whereabouts of the 
games. There are so many intricate and dark passages lead- 
ing into and through the densely populated part of China- 
town, that a hundred games might be running in "full blast," 
and the police be ignorant of them. Besides, in these days of 
official corruj)tion, it does not take many glittering coins to 
dazzle the eyes of the ordinary policemen so much as to ob- 
scure his vision, when he turns his gaze in the direction of the 
dens of vice and infamy that have made Chinatown so noto- 


Not less than seven tenths of the Chinese women that come 
to California are imported to fill houses of prostitution. Some 
of them have led this life of shame in their native country, 
prostitution there not being looked upon as an infamous busi- 
ness, but followed by many as a legitimate avocation. Many 
of those, however, who are brought to our shores for such vile 
purj)oses, are virtuous young girls, having previously dwelt 
secure in their j^urity under the parental roof; but, like most 
of their fallen white sisters in our own country, driven to this 
repulsive piirsuit by the rigor of extreme poverty. Some are 


sold into slavery for a term of j^ears, by their parents or broth- 
ers, to obtain relief from pressing want. Those who purchase 
their services are aware that they are unprofitable in any other 
occupation, and, therefore, they must either accede to the 
desires of their masters or submit to most cruel personal 

For a tour of inspection through the Chinese " quarter" — 
the visitor mus't choose the night-time for his stroll, and under 
escort of a police officer who is familiar with the by-paths and 
lanes that traverse buildings and blocks, he will encounter many 
things that will not only disgust, but startle his senses. The 
most offensive characteristics of the race, the vice and abomin- 
ation, the filth and misery, are not prominently visible, but 
are hid from public gaze in the dark alleys that beset the 
broad joublic streets. Many of the opium dens, gambling houses 
and lotteries are there, and nearly all the houses of prostitu- 

The entrance doors to these latter are provided with small 
panel openings, at which the face of the occupant of the house 
may be seen in all its blooming colors. In j^assing along, 
from each of these openings there comes a scarcely audible 
hiss-s-s-zzz, and if you stop to observe more closely, two 
almond eyes are seen peeping out, and a modest voice is heard 
saying " Come in! You come in!" These words, with a few en- 
dearing terms, are all the English, the Chinese cyprian com- 
mands, but she is profuse with her familiar caresses and in 
the wanton display of her j)erson. 

The furniture of most of these houses is very plain. The 
same economy of space is here observed as in the other houses 
occupied by the Chinese. A room of ordinary size is divided 
into several compartments, by gay colored chintz or cambric 
partitions. Matting or a common wool carpet covers the floor, 
while the chairs and other furniture are generally the most com- 
mon kinds. Not unfrequently the beds are of the crudest 
manufacture, being simply a shelf made of common boards, but 
curtained and otherwise disguised so as to appear comfortable. 
There are a few houses, however, designed for the patronage 
of white men exclusively, that are furnished with some ele- 
gance. Rich drapery of gorgeous colors falls in graceful folds 
from the arch of chamber alcoves; the carpets are soft and 
pretty, the furniture quite costly, and the air is fragrant with 


delicate oriental perfumes. The inmates of the houses are 
richly clad in Chinese costume, and there is every evidence of 
a desire to reuder the place attractive. The pillows upon which 
these Celestial beauties repose their heads, are blocks of wood,, 
sometimes lightly cushioned, but oftener left uncovered. They 
are constructed so as to rest the head (or rather the back of the 
neck) upon them, and permit the hair to remain free from any 
pressure. This is because of the peculiar and complicated, 
style of doing up the hair, which is a lengthy operation as well 
as expensive. 

The number of Chinese prostitutes in San Francisco is vari- 
ously estimated at from one thousand to two thousand. There 
is no doubt more than the former, and probably less than the 
latter; enough certainly to disgrace the city and greatly facili- 
tate the spreading of — already too bold — immorality and vice 
among the youth of all classes. 

Why the fathers and mothers of San Francisco continue to 
dwell where their children are forced to live under such evil in- 
fluences, is strange. It were better for them to quit San Fran- 
cisco entirely, if it is impossible to stay this tide of vice. Every 
city of any thrift has its disreputable streets and neighborhoods, 
where vice and crime center, but it would be difficult to find 
even in "wicked Chicago," or New York — cities notorious for 
fostering such germs of social disease — a cesspool of vice so 
offensive and so disastrous to morality, as the few blocks in 
Chinatown, where are congregated these infamous creatures, 
and the no less notorious j)recincts of Barbary Coast, But it 
is in the power of the people to rid themselves of these cui'se- 
marks. Let the city officials understand that such is their 
desire, and they will soon find means to disperse it; or if they 
do not, substitute for them men that ivill. Much of the official 
neglect of duty that is complained of, is occasioned by the in- 
difference of those who have the making of officials. There is 
too much apathy among the voters. "I have no interest in 
politics, is the common remark." We may not as private citi- 
zens have any interest in political details, but the general re- 
sults of the working of these details materially' affect us. The 
fundamental principle of our government is the placing of the 
governing power in the hands of the people. Somebody must 
rule, and if the people choose to neglect this important privi- 


lege, abusive usurpers wiJl not be wanting to take charge of 
public affairs. 


After the long and bloody strife between the two great par- 
ties of our country, ostensibly precipitated because of a noble 
and humane feeling for our common brothers — the negro 
slaves — we, as a nation, extended to them the hand of fellow- 
shij), and said, in affectionate tone, " Step up higher, broth- 
ers; this is a land of libeety and equality." That was more 
than ten years ago ; and the people of the nation who were 
more directly interested in that liberal action were very re- 
mote from the western shores of the continent. This perhaps 
accounts for the apparent unconcern the citizens of California 
manifest relative to the slavery that is tolerated on her free 
soil. And yet, the great part of California's jDopulation con- 
sists of those who joined their voices in the cry against oppres- 
sion, but have since quit the scenes of those bloody struggles 
to enjoy the more salubrious climate of California. "We have 
observed that many of these are rather favorable to the system 
of slavery that exists in California, and deprives many of the 
Chinese, both men and women, of their freedom — and we have 
also observed that Arizona diamonds are not less rare than the 
jewel of consistency. 

The slavery that exists in California — its propagators being 
in San Francisco — is the system of "contract labor" practised 
by both Americans and Chinese. It may be liberty to the 
Chinaman, who comes to this country under its rules, but it is 
slavery when construed in the sjDirit of justice. 

The most disastrous effects of this traffic in human flesh and 
blood is seen in the Chinese "quarter" of San Francisco — in* 
the Chinese houses of j)rostitution. No one denies — except 
the deluded and timid creatures themselves, who dare not ad- 
mit it, for fear of brutal treatment — that these women are pur- 
chased upon order in China, and brought to this country like 
so many cases of tea. After they arrive here, they are sold to 
the highest bidder — some being purchased by rich Chinamen, 
who maintain private harems — but most of them going into the 
custody of the proprietors of houses of ill-fame, there to expend 
what charms they have for the increase of immorality — not to 
say the spreading of the most loathsome diseases. 


The contracts these women are required to sign, are similar 
to the following: 

" For the consideration of $600 (or any sum agreed upon) paid into my 
hands this day, I, Ah Ho, promise to prostitute my body for the term of 
four (or any other number) years. If, in that time, I am sick one day, two 
iceeks shall be added to my time ; and, if more than one day, my term of 
prostitution shall continue an additional month. But if I run away, or escape 
from the custody of my keeper, then I am to be held as a slave fob life." 

(Signed) "Ah Ho." 

From the reading of the foregoing contract, Ah Ho has 
evidently received $600 in advance for four years' service, 
which, from a Chinese standpoint, is good wages, considering 
that the prostitution of her body is a profession bringing no 
disgrace, and perfectly legitimate. But unfortunately the 
money that Ah Ho declares was "paid into my hands this 
day," was, immediately after she had signed the contract, 
j)aid out again to the person who had found a purchaser for 
lier services, and Ah Ho being ignorant and intimidated by 
threats of violence, is held in slavery by the contract she had 
voluntaril}'' signed. 

Perhaps as the exjDiration of the term of slavery draws nigh, 
her master will secure the services of an accomjDlice, who will, 
by offers of marriage, and various inducements, prevail upon 
Ala Ho to flee from her place of imprisonment. Then she is 
again delivered over to her master, and by the contract is 
"held as a slave for life." 

Thus are the Chinese women of San Francisco kept in slav- 
ery for the most infamous purjDOses, brutally treated while in 
health, and if overtaken by sickness — which from the nature 
of the life they lead is sure to speedily come — are turned out 
upon the street, reviled by their countrj^men, and find no relief 
except in a most agonizing death. Sometimes a woman is 
reclaimed from these Adle dens, and placed in a mission, or 
married to a christianized Chinaman; but her former master is 
full of resource, ingenious, and irrepressible, and sooner or 
later she is likely to be kidnapped and conveyed to a place of 
concealment, beyond the reach of her rescuers or the officers 
of the law, to continue in the disgraceful service. 


It is a rare and curious sight to see a drunken Chinaman. 
Few of the race indulge iu the habit of drinking intoxicating 


liquors, and tliere are none, perhaps, that drink enough to be 
called drunkards. But their temj)erance in this is offset by 
the intemperate use of opium — both for eating and smoking — 
but more particularly the latter. 

A Chinese opium den is one of the offensive sights that the 
visitor discovers during a stroll through Chinatown. He may 
have had his senses shocked by the savage noises that are heard 
in passing through the reeking alleys and lanes; by the pesti- 
lential odors that fill the air, and that even the smelling-bottle 
will not disperse from his sensitive nostrils; by the filth and 
jDutrefying offal that is upon the streets and in the buildings, 
the sight of which may have awakened symptoms of the most 
dreadful diseases; but until he is within a well patronized 
oj)ium den, and recovered from the shock experienced upon 
first entering, he has not seen the most disgusting character- 
istic of the Chinese "quarter." This "den" may be a very- 
small room (and it is apparently all the more j)opular if it is) 
but there is always "room for one more." There are shelves 
on all sides, one above the other, upon which are spread blan- 
kets, and perhaps an occasional mattrass for the more fastidi- 
ous smoker. Upon these are sprawled out in all manner of 
pose, and in all stages of stupor or idiocy, the opium smokers, 
each clinging to his pipe endeavoring to get one more full 
"whiff," with the tenacity of a drowning man hanging to a 
floating wreck. 

The bunks are commonly arranged for two persons. The 
smokers lie face to face, their heads resting upon blocks of 
wood or tin cans — in fact, anything large enough and posses- 
sing the supporting solidity — and between them is placed the 
lamp, from the flame of which they light their pipes, and the 
small cup containing the opium. The opium is especially pre- 
pared for the purpose, being of the consistency of x^aste. A 
small bit of it is taken upon a wire, placed to the bowl of the 
pipe, and then held over the flame of the lamp, and the smoking 
process begins. "Long pulls and strong pulls" are taken, 
and at each inspiration the fumes and smoke are drawn deep 
into the lungs, retained there for a moment, and then blown 
out at the nostrils. The aperture in the bowl of the pipe is 
so small that one filling furnishes only a few good "draws," 
and then it has to be replenished. An experienced smoker 
handles his pi^^e so deftly that there is not much time lost iu 


refilling it, aud he keeps up a pretty regular puffing until the 
ecstatic stage of somnolence is reached, when his body be- 
comes relaxed, the pipe drops from his fingers, his hand falls 
by his side, and his spirit takes its flight to those ethereal 
realms where there is naught but happy surroundings — where 
no thought of earth, with its trouble and pain, disturbs the 
sublimity of the soul, or mars the blissful enjoyments that are 
afforded it in that mystic region of fantasy. But to those who 
have not yet been transported to that blissful clime, he who 
is thus overcome by the deadl}'^ narcotic is not the most attrac- 
tive creature in the world. His eyes are glassy and expres- 
sionless, his body limp and lifeless, and his skin takes on the 
ashy ]Daleness of death. 

The habit of opium smoking among the Chinese is almost 
as universal as that of gambling. Many partake of the drug 
moderately, finding relief from the fatigue of the day's labor 
in the opium-pipe at night. But there are some who have 
used it to such excess that they are miserable when not under 
its influence, and therefore their whole object in life is to 
gratify this intemperate desire, and like the drunkard is with 
his cup, so are they with the opium-pijie — they die with it at 
their lips. 

The most startling feature of this opium smoking is the ease 
with which one glides into the habit. Curious persons will 
try a pipeful just to see how it tastes, and the sensation is so 
pleasant that they are tempted to repeat the experiment. 
"When the habit becomes fixed, death is the only cure. 

In some of the more secluded opium dens, and those kept 
under strict privacy by the jDroprietors, at any hour of the 
night he who is admitted will find a number of young men 
and women — not Chinese — distributed about the room on 
lounges and beds in miscellaneous confusion, all under the 
influence of the drug. Of course most of these women are of 
the disreputable class, but the young men, though really no 
better, are our respectable sons and brothers, who move in 
good society, and are of "good repute." 


During a tour of inspection through Chinatown, in com- 
pany with an officer, we had passed the earl}' part of the 
night on the jiublic streets and alleys, awaiting a later hour 


ifor our underground researches, when the crowds on the 
istreets would have gathered themselves into their lodging 
places. At about the hour of eleven, we descended a pair of 
rickety steps into a basement hall-way, and lighting oiu' tapers, 
jn'oceeded to explore the underground abodes of the Chinese 
of San Francisco. The officer, who was well known to the 
Chinese population, was perfectly familiar on the premises, 
going wherever he desired without even giving a warning 
kuock. Many private little games were broken into by this 
unceremonious course, and many sleepers were startled from 
their dreams by being suddenly awakened by the gleaming of 
a star — a very strange sight in those dark underground 

We had traced the damp and slimy walls of a narrow 
passage-way for an apparently interminable distance, running 
in every direction, sometimes on a decline and then ascending, 
turning at acute, obtuse, and right-angles, the sides, however, 
showing many openings, beyond each of which were perhaps 
sweetly sleeping a dozen Chinamen; we had waded through 
slops that when disturbed by our foot-steps gave off a deadly 
odor, and we had passed by couches, damp and filthy, whereon 
lay pain-racked bodies, writhing in the agony of disease and 
mental gloom, unattended, uncared for — dying, not so much 
of disease as from mental distress and anguish of soul, occa- 
sioned because of their solitude and their dismal surround- 
ings. On, on we went, shunning a cesspool here, starting now 
and then at the hideous squeals of great lazy rats, upon which 
we would tread in the darkness, now passing underneath the 
street, and now ascending two or three steps, where (we hoped) 
the air would be less suffocating, continuing our journey, 
iowever, until we came to a solid wall of brick and mortar, 
that checked our onward progress. At first, we did not dis- 
cover any opening through which we might further proceed, 
and we had just decided to retrace our foot-steps and seek a 
j)urer air above ground, when our attention was attracted 
by a low moaning sound, as if some one in great distress 
liad uttered a lament. We trimmed our tapers and looked 
about us more closely, when we discovered, in the angle of 
the wall, a wooden panel, beneath which a ray of light 
gleamed. This board panel proved to be a small door, made 
of heavy timber, securely fastened by a peculiar latch. The 


officer made several ineffectual attempts to open it, and had 
picked up a stout scantling near by, to force the door from its 
fastenings. He had made one heavy stroke, and was raising 
the stick to strike again, when a hand was placed upon his 
arm and a voice said, "You no sabee; me show you." We 
turned about us almost frightened at this sudden and un- 
heralded disturbance; and beheld before us what looked more 
like a ghost than a living mortal, and the voice spake again as 
this apparition began to fumble at the strange latch — "Me 
show you; you no sabee." 

Mute from surprise, we gazed uj)on this creature, so phan- 
tom-like in the dim light from our tapers, as it tugged at the 
fastening of the door. We saw, yet we scarce believed our 
eyes, that an aged Chinaman stood before us. His hair was 
not shorn in the style of the Chinese, but hung in draggling 
tufts over his shoulders, and half concealed an emaciated and 
jDallid face. His clothing was scant, mouldy, and in tatters. 
On his feet were a cast-away j^air of Chinese shoes, above 
which his bony, uncovered ankles, were seen, looking more 
like two decaying sticks than living skin and bone. In the 
movements he made in trying to slij) the latch, the fragment 
of a coat that was poorly secured upon his shoulders, was 
thrown back, and a part of his breast and neck was revealed. 
We had previously observed a sort of excrescent growth upon 
his face, of a purple color; but his shaggy locks half hid it 
from view, and Ave thought nothing more of it. But when his 
mantle dropped from his shoulders, and we saw his body, cov- 
ered with dark ulcers, blue lumps, and putrefying sores, our 
hearts stood still, and our breathing was suspended; then re- 
covering, we sprang back into the darkness, and cried out in 
the same breath : "Back! A Leper!" 

A few moments after, when we emerged from a steaming 
basement, panting and trembling, we looked at the stars and 
remarked their brightness; and the air, although burdened by 
the noisome odors that arise from the filthy dens and streets of 
Chinatown at night-time, was never more refreshing. 


The Chinese are excessively fond of the drama. A single 
pla}' continues nightly, from one to three months, before the 
final act is reached. Their dramas are simply the reproduction 


of very ancient historical events, the minutest details beiug 
faithfully represented. Apparently they do not relish plays 
based upon modern occurrences, and hence there are few of 
such enacted. Viewing it from an American standpoint, the 
Chinese drama is in a very crude state; but perhaj^s an intelli- 
gent Chinaman would pronounce the same criticism on the art 
as presented on our own stages, and in the absence of a disin- 
terested third jDerson to judge which opinion is correct, we 
must be content to leave the question of superiority unsettled. 
The profession of actor (there are no Chinese actresses) is not 
considered very reputable by the Chinese; and, as a conse- 
quence, there is very little rivalry and not much improvement 
among the Chinese dramatic artists. 

In San Francisco, there are two Chinese theatres; the most 
popular of which is the Chinese Royal Theatre, on Jackson 
Street. The auditorium of these is constructed after the 
style of the American theatres, but there are no pretensions 
to elegance, comfort, or artistic finish in any part of the build- 
ing. A circle and gallery, furnished with common benches, 
perhaps two or three private boxes — not, however, as desira- 
ble as the the public seats — and a small gallery for female 
spectators, constitute the seating capacity of the room. The 
stage is simply a raised j)latform, having no drop-curtain nor 
scenes. If, in the course of the play, it is necessary for one 
of the actors to assume to die, he goes about it in a business- 
like manner, and after the last agony has passed, and the 
audience have accepted the representation of death as com- 
plete, he gets up and walks off the stage in full view of the 
spectators, entirely dispelling the delusion that the drop-cur- 
tain would strengthen. This certainly indicates that the Chi- 
nese have very practical minds. The actors, when not engaged 
with a part, occupy seats at the rear of the stage — still in view 
of the audience — where they eat and smoke incessantly. The 
orchestra numbers five or six instruments, the more prominent 
of which are the gong, drum, and Chinese fiddle. The per- 
formers on these instruments sit just behind the actors, and, 
judging from the unceasing din they make, they are paid for 
the quantity instead of the quality of music produced. Two 
doors at the back of the stage — one at each side — serve for 
the ingress and egress of the actors. 

The costumes of the actors are grotesque, and sometimes so 


disfigure the form of the wearer that it is difficult to decide 
whether he be brute or human. Little dancing is seen on the 
stage of the Chinese theatres, and except that indulged in by 
the actors, it is an amusement that the race have no relish for 
whatever. Their strength is too valuable to be exhausted in 
this (to them) useless exercise. 

During the most exciting performances on the stage, there 
may be an occasional deep drawn sigh or a slight murmur of 
satisfaction in the audience ; but however intense the interest 
in the play may be, there is never a burst of applause, com- 
mingled with the stamping of feet and clapping of hands. The 
countenances of both actors and spectators for the most part 
Tcmain stolid and expressionless, the former aj)parently indif- 
ferent as to whether they act well or ill, the latter contemplat- 
ing the scene with a look of unconcern, as if the performance 
that they witness was an every day life experience. Yet they 
all heartily enjoy it, and are pleased. 





EVERY Saturday there is issued from the lithographic press 
a good-sized sheet, bearing at the top of the first page, as 
its title, the above peculiar characters, which, reading from right 
to left, would be pronounced Tong Fan Goon Po — ineaning, 
in English, The Oriental. The Oriental is the organ of the 
Chinese of California. Except a small card of the publishers, 
in one corner, this paper is printed in Chinese characters, and 
to any person except a Chinaman it is anything but a news- 
paper. On its exchange list are numerous Chinese papers, 
published in different cities of the Empire. From these the 
publishers glean interesting news from the different provinces 
in China, which does not fail to be appreciated by the Chinese 
here; for they are always eager to obtain tidings from home. 

Its local columns are filled with clippings from the daily city 
papers, with now and then short editorial comments upon 
topics relating in any way to the Chinese population in Cali- 
fornia. By it, more than from any other source, the Chinese 
are informed of the excitement their presence in California 
occasions. The various municipal ordinances that are enacted 
by the authorities, specially directed at the Chinese, are duly 
mentioned and exiolained, so that John Chinaman may not 
ignorantly violate the "Melican" laws. 

Fung Affoo, a christianized Chinaman, who s^Deaks, writes 
and reads English well, and who is very intelligent withal, is 
the translator for the paper. He is a very affable gentleman, 
and converses entertainingly uj)on any topic that may be intro- 
duced. He is a young man, perhaps not thirty years of age; 
but having left his native country in childhood, and traveled 


extensively in America, he is perhaps as tlaoroughly American- 
ized as a Chinaman can be — dressing in the American costume, 
and conforming to many of our customs. 

The Oriental has about seven hundred regTilar subscribers, 
most of whom are in San Francisco. Many of the American 
merchants advertise in its columns. It is printed on stone, by 
the lithograj)hic process, there being no Chinese type in this 
country. Its publishers are Chock "Wong and J. Hoffman, and 
it is furnished to subscribers at five dollars a year. 


The Chinese, as a class, are great readers. The educated, 
in particular, are very studious — improving all their lei.suro 
time by reading standard Chinese works. Books are exposed 
for sale in almost all the stores in the Chinese "quarter." 
Many of the common Chinese laborers, who are apparently 
ignoi-ant of everything except the manner of performing the 
work they are engaged in, and the fact that to live they must 
eat, drink, and sleep, occuj)y their leisure moments in reading. 

What they read, is difficult to learn. They have an exten- 
sive literature from which to draw, but the particular kind of 
works that the Chinese in California prefer to study or read, is 
known only to themselves. They will tell you that they read 
novels or stories, \ei'j like our modern writers produce, and 
we are aware that the educated persons among them have 
recourse to books treating of various important subjects. The 
writings of the ancient philosophers, are the Chinese classics, 
and no student has finished his education without having stud- 
ied the more popular works of these authors pretty thoroughly. 

Besides books of romance, poetry, and like light produc- 
tions, they have works on most all subjects that book-makers 
of other nations have treated, among which are botany, natu- 
ral history, geography and medicine. They frequently carry 
medical works with them wherever they go, so that should 
disease or accident overtake them when beyond the reach of a 
physician, they may learn how to prescribe for themselves. 








IT is veiy difficult to ascertain wliich of the three forms of 
religious belief — Confucian, Taouist or Buddhist — has the 
most adherents in San Francisco. Many of the Chinese no 
doubt recognize certain principles in them all, and by harmon- 
izing these, manage in some way to evolve a doctrine that sat- 
isfies their religious cravings. Confucius is a favorite ancestor, 
and he is, therefore, accepted by many as the divine teacher of 
men. His writings are much studied by the educated; and the 
whole political, as well as social, machinery of the Chinese is 
founded on his philosophy. His Book of Rites is the law to 
each individual Chinaman, whether he be a disciple of the 
Buddha or of the divine Lao-tsze — for by it are his actions regu- 
lated, it being officially accepted as best suited to instruct man- 
kind in all of life's duties. 

According to Chinese scholars, Confucius was born on the 
19th of June, 551, B.C., in the petty province of Lu. His 
name was Kong, but his disciples and admirers called him Kong 
fii-tsi (Kong, the master or teacher), which, being latinized by 
the Jesuit missionaries, was resolved into Confucius. 

Confucius did not pretend to have any greater wisdom than 
that any intelligent man might acquire. He was simply a 
wise philosopher, and his philosophy was ethical, not religious. 
He taught men how to live, not how to die. He did not recog- 
nize any superior being, as God; but believed that man could 
attain to the highest intellectual and moral perfection of all 
creatures or things. His doctrine is simply told by himself : 
" I teach you nothing," says he, " but what you might learn 
yourselves, viz: the observance of the three fundamental laws 
of relation between sovereign and subject, father and child, hus- 
band and wife; and the five capital virtues — universal charity. 


impartial justice, conformity to ceremonies and established usages, 
rectitude of heart and mind, and pure sincerity." He incul- 
cated the necessity of acts of homage for the dead, and advised 
that respectful ceremonies be observed at the graves of de- 
ceased j)ersons or at their homes; — hence the practice now pre- 
vailing among Chinese of keeping a room in their residences 
for the worship of the dead — the " hall of ancestors," — and the 
ceremonies that are therein performed at certain dates. Con- 
fucius' most god-like quality was, that in his life he pi«actised 
what he preached. This example had its influence on the 
peoj^le, and caused many who would not otherwise have accepted 
his teachings, to enlist as his disciples. 

During his life, he held several political offices at different 
times, in the administration of which he introduced many re- 
forms. He died 479 B.C., at the age of three-score years and 
ten. His family has continued through sixty-eight or seventy 
generations, to the joreseut day, in the same province and locali- 
ty where he was born. They are honored by various privileges, 
and enjoy a sort of aristocratic distinction — being the only ex- 
amples of hereditary aristocracy in the Empire. 

Lao-tsze, was the founder of the Taouist (sect of reason) re- 
ligion. His existence is rather mythical. His biographers 
name the time of his birth as G04 B.C., and of his death one 
hundred and nineteen years thereafter. The latter part of his 
life was therefore contemporaneous with Confucius. It is said 
that Confucius visited the old philosopher with a view to gain 
more wisdom from him, but the meeting of the two sages was. 
not satisfactory. Lao-tsze rebuked Confucius for his pride. 

The Taouist religion, as promulgated by its founder, was ex- 
cellent, and more nearly suited to the spiritual nature of man 
than the Confucian, but its succeeding advocates and inter- 
preters have introduced so many new isms into the doctrine, 
among which are alchemy and divination, that it is now ac- 
cepted only by the imbecile aged, and the illiterate. 

The disciples of Lao-tsze believe — as his biographers state — 
that he was the incarnation of a shooting star, and that previ- 
ous to his birth he lay in his mothers' womb for eighty years. 
It is also a common belief among them that he did not die, but 
like Elijah, was translated to heaven — not however in a chariot 
of fire, but upon the back of a black buffalo. 

We are told that Buddhism— from the title " The Buddha,'* 


meaning " the wise," " the enlightened," which was given to 
its founder — has existed nearly two thousand five hundred 
years, and is the prevailing religion of the world. It originated 
in Hindostan, and a prince, by name Siddhartha, is the ac- 
credited founder of this belief. This royal child was very pre- 
cocious, having displayed wonderful intellectual powers in 
early childhood. It was the desire of the king — his father — 
that the prince should be reared amidst the splendors of a rich 
court; and therefore Siddhartha was surrounded by every lux- 
ury. Had he been disposed, as most princes are, he would 
have felt, no doubt, that his was to be a life of pleasure — a, 
blissful existence; but his mind was too active and grasping to- 
be content with such emptiness, and those things that had been, 
placed about him by loving hands, to heighten his enjoyment,, 
became repulsive. He was given to meditation, and in his 
thoughtful moods the gaiety around him was a source of an- 
noyance; so he fled the court, and shut himself up in a monas- 
tery, in the solitude of which, he endeavored to solve the prob- 
lem of life. After great turbulence of mind and continued 
thoughtfulness, by which many conclusions were formed, ac- 
cepted as true for a time and finally abandoned for more satis- 
factory deductions, the principles of the Buddhist religion were 

It has been said by learned writers that the original moral 
code of the Buddha, "for pureness, excellence, and wisdom, is 
only second to that of the Divine Lawgiver himself." It 
taught charity, purity, patience, courage, contemplation,/ 
knowledge, resignation under misfortune, and humility. 

It is a doctrine of transmigration of souls. As soon as the 
life (which is the soul) goes out of one body it is born again 
into another existence. If, while the soul inhabited the first 
body, the actions and thoughts done in that body were in 
accordance with the teachings of the Buddha, then the new 
birth would be higher and holier. Thus the soul would con- 
tinue throughout interminable ages, passing from one high 
existence to another still more exalted, till a perfect bliss 
might perhaps finally be reached in one of the many Buddhist 
heavens. For the bad spirits or souls a retrograde transmi- 
gration is marked out, until they at last reach one of the one 
hundred and thirty-six hells, prepared for them in the centre 
of the earth. But according to the Buddhist belief, there is 


no God. They perhaps unconsciously look up to a higher 
power than human, but the doctrine originated with man, and 
therefore it is thought not to comprehend anything that man 
cannot attain to by his natural intellectual gifts. 

But Buddhism, like most other religious beliefs, has been 
corrupted by attempted improvements, until the original doc- 
trine is scarcely recognized in the principles of the Buddhists 
to-day. It was like a machine that is perhaps nearly perfect, 
but complicated. So long as the inventor is at call to adjust 
any dislocated part, it operates successfully; but for practical 
use, among any and every kind of peoj)le, it soon ceases to be 

The "wisdom of its founder is thought so superior that his 
disciples worship him instead of following the precepts he 
laid down. Thus has it merged into a species of idolatry. 


We have thus briefly alluded to the prevailing religious 
beliefs among the Chinese, hoj)ing that in so doing the reader 
may be able to discover a reason for some of the peculiarities 
of the race. We do not pretend to know how many of the 
Chinese of San Francisco hold to one or another of these, 
but there are few among them who are not influenced by the 
teachings of those who are earnest believers in one of these 
three religions. The Christian religion, to them, is like Bud- 
dhism is to us — incomprehensible; and because they as a 
nation have advanced in many things that tend to a high 
civilization, though almost opposite to our own, they may 
naturally think that theij are right, and we are wrong — that we 
are the heathens and barbarians, while they are the farthest 
advanced in civilization. From the principles of their various 
religions, and the zeal they manifest in following their teach- 
ings, we can understand how difficult it is for the Chinese to 
readily assimilate with Americans, by adopting our costume 
and copying after our manners and habits of life. 

There are no less than six Chinese Joss houses, or places of 
worship, in San Francisco; but of these there is but one that 
approaches very nearly to our ideas of the elegance and mag- 
nificence of an oriental pagan temple. But even the finest of 
these does not appear externally, to be anything superior to 
the ordinary dingy business block of the Chinese quarter — if 


"we except a little display of tinsel on the balcony, and a pair 
of artificially animated dragons that are perched upon the 
outer balustrade. The disciples of the Buddha, of Confucius, 
or of Lao-tsze, are too cautious and too j)ractical, to squander 
their hard-earned dollars by erecting costly ' ' temples to the 
gods" in a land where their presence is considered unwhole- 
some; so they content themselves by fitting up only the in- 
terior of the house of worship in accordance with the custom 
that obtains in their native land. 

The entrance to a Chinese Joss house in San Francisco is 
up numerous flights of narrow, dingy stairs, dark and foul. 
The chambers, wherein the many deities are enthroned, are 
usually in the top stoiy of the building. Upon entering be- 
fore the sacred presence, the odor of burning incense and the 
^ioona of night are opj)ressive to the senses. At the wall, on 
the side of the room, is a raised platform, perhaps three feet 
iiigh, set back in a sort of arched alcove, upon which are placed 
the images of worshij), to all of whom the devout Chinaman 
deems it his duty to offer thanksgiving and adoration at cer- 
tain times. These images or idols are made of wood or j)las- 
ter, not quite as large as life, and may be many or few, accord- 
ing to the ability and desire of the joroprietors of the temj)le. 
There is seldom a less number than three, and frequently from 
six to twelve are set up to receive worship. The drapery, carv- 
ing and gilt, that ornament the alcoves, are costly and elegant, 
in the finer Joss houses — considerable artistic taste and much 
skillful workmanship being manifest in the arrangement, al- 
though the moulding or sculpturing of the images is very 
crude. Hanging in front of the gods is a glass lantern, filled 
with oil, in which is kept burning constantly a small taper, 
while at their feet, in a box of sand or ashes, are small incense 
sticks, of paper and sandal wood, slowly burning away, the 
smoke and odor of which ascend even into the very nostrils 
and eyes of the sacred images, forever and forever. Curiously 
wrought vases stand on tables about the room, in some of which 
are bouquets of artificial flowers, while in others are bamboo 
splits, slips of paper, divining-sticks, and various other acces- 
sories to heathen worship. There are tables, upon which are 
j)laced gilded carvings, executed with wonderful skill — evi- 
dently being mimic representations of the large images of wor- 
ship, together with many curious devices, representing ani- 


mals, plants, fowls, fishes, etc., no doubt forming a pictorial 
liistory of Chinese mythology. A large bell, mounted uj)ou a 
stout frame, and an immense drum, form the furniture of an- 
other part of the room. These are used to arouse the sleeping 
gods, as well as to render more impressive certain ceremonial 
observances. Immediately in front of the images are placed 
tables, upon which the food offerings are strewn. The gods 
are seldom permitted to go hungry, and their thirst is forever 
allayed by the bounteous supply of tea that is kept constantly 
before them within easy reach. 

The lining of the canopy over the gods is crimson, and about 
the walls of the building, both inside and out, uiDon the pilas- 
ters of the alcoves, and upon the curtains, are characters in 
crimson, red and gilt, having various significances. Just over 
the i^roscenium arch — as it were — are the characters Sliing 
Ti Ling Toi, which means, "the spiritual gallery of the all- 
powerful gods." Beneath this, on a richly embroidered cur- 
tain, are Siting Shan Mo Keung — "the gods whose holy age is- 
perpetual." Those on the outer walls are generally the pray- 
ers of the worshipers, with their names attached, and not un- 
frequently the amount they contribute in offerings. 

The princiiDal images in these temples represent ' ' the god of 
the Sombre Heavens," "the god of War," "the god of Medi- 
cine," and "the god of Wealth," all of which are worshiped; 
and a large number of very small evil deities — representing 
many of the commoner sins — which are j^ropitiated. The first 
of these — "the god of the Sombre Heavens" — is Yun Ten 
Tin, who is supposed to have the entire control of the water of 
the earth. He is worshiped because of his ability to prevent 
drouth and extinguish fire — two great evils that are prevalent 
in China. 

Koran Tai, "the god of War," is a favorite deity with the 
Chinese of San Francisco, because of the remarkable power he 
possesses of settling disputes, quelling riots, etc., — a simjile 
appeal to him being sufficient to intimidate the most malicious 
enemy. His financial ability is regarded as superior also. 

Wah Taw, "the god of Medicine," is another favorite, being 
ajDpealed to while in health, to keep ofi" disease, and while sick, 
for relief. By the aid of the mysterious incantations of a priest, 
this divine healer is supposed to be able to cure all manner of 
disease. But Tsoi Pah Shing Ewun, "the god of Wealth," the 


dispenser of riches, has about him the more earnest and hope- 
ful worshipers of all. To him the merchants, capitalists, 
money changers, etc., bend the knee ; and to him does almost 
every Chinaman appeal, whether rich or poor, hoping thereby 
to be prospered in whatever business he is engaged in. There 
are separate deities for female worshipers — that is, those wor- 
shiped by them exclusively. 

With all i hese accessories so convenient for a lengthy ritual 
service, the worship of the Chinese is very simple and com- 
monplace. There is a marked lack of reverence in their man- 
ner of approach to "the gods." They do not uncover the 
head, nor cease their conversation, neither do they remove 
from their lips the pipe or cigar; but if they have an offering 
to make they do it in the simjolest and most unceremonious 
way, and then go through the chin-chinning performance 
(bowing low three times) as quick and as slight as though the 
whole jDroceeding were of very little importance. Occasion- 
ally one will prostrate himself before his deity and mutter in 
a low voice, a prayer; and it is not uncommon for the female 
worshipers to conduct themselves very reverently, as if they 
felt their own humility, and recognized in the image before 
them a very superior being, worthy of everlasting adoration. 

The priests receive their support fi^om the sale of incense 
tapers, paper money offerings, incense candles, and the like, 
required by the worshipers. Many visitors also purchase 
from them some of the devotional apparatus, to keep as Chi- 
nese curiosities. The Chinese temples of San Francisco, if 
treated in detail, would furnish subject matter for an extended 
article ; but after all it would be a narrative abounding in mys- 
tery, no less incomprehensible than peculiar — a fit and inter- 
esting subject for a special work, but inappropriate for a 
volume of sketches. Although the Chinese appear to us indif- 
ferent and unconcerned about their religious affairs, it is cer- 
tainly apparent that there is nothing that exerts a more power- 
ful influence over them than their religious beliefs. 






THE Chinese in America seem to fully understand tlie ben- 
efits of co-operation. Most any business or industr^^ in 
which they engage as principals is shared in by a company 
organization, which may number as members or partners, 
from two to twenty-five jjersons; while the members of the 
"Six Companies" are counted by tens of thousands. They 
are a very uncommunicative people, when questioned regard- 
ing their private affairs, and it is therefore very difficult — al- 
most impossible — to learn the particular nature of the com- 
l^acts they form among themselves. There is apparently a 
sort of freemasonry among them, by which they are influenced 
and" controlled to a great degree — the secret working of which 
is known only to those concerned. 

In many of the manufacturing industries they have engaged 
in, there is an association of labor as well as capital. A num- 
ber of practical shoemakers or cigarmakers will associate them- 
selves into a company, rent j^roper rooms to carry on their 
business, purchase material on their combined credit, and with 
a very little individual or company capital, start and continue 
successfully, an extensive manufacturing business. Each mem- 
ber of the firm, however, is aj^ractical workman, and performs 
his respective share of the labor required in the enterprise. 
In this manner, the workmen employed by white manufactur- 
ers, when discharged, frequently unite in the same business, 
and in a week come before the public as strong competitors of 
their former employer, from whom they had learned the busi- 


It is very probable that every Chinaman on the Pacific Coast 
belongs to one or another of the six principal companies. 


These companies are ostensibly organized for protective and 
charitable purposes, yet there is little doubt but that the offi- 
cers (of -whom there are twelve for each company) and strong- 
est members turn the influence and authority of their respect- 
ive societies to speculative purposes — although they persis- 
tently deny any such assertions. 

The Chinese come from different districts and provinces of 
the Empire, and all those coming from the same section are 
generally enrolled in that company having the greatest num- 
ber of members from their native district. Thus the comj)a- 
nies may be said to be sectional, rej)resenting district divisions 
of territory in China. These companies have been formed as 
exigencies have demanded, some having been organized quite 
reoently, while others have been in. existence since there has 
been any considerable Chinese immigration to California. 

The names of the companies and the membership of each 
are as follows: Wing Yung Company, 75,000; Hop Wo Com- 
pany, 34,000; Kong Chow Company, 15,000; Yung Wo Com- 
pany, 10,200; Sam Yup Company, 10,100, and Yan Wo Com- 
pany, 4,300. This list of members comprises those who are 
scattered broadcast throughout the country, and those who 
have returned to China, as well as the city membership. Each 
companj^ has a jDresiding officer who is elected every year by 
the votes of the merchants and men of wealth only. There 
are no dues charged and no apparent income to the company 
treasury, except the sum of five dollars that each member is 
compelled to -p&j before he returns to his native land. 

It might appear strange to those unacquainted with Chinese 
tact, how the companies could keep watch over so many 
members, and collect this fee before they have embarked upon 
the steamer, and are perhaps without the Golden Gate rajoidly 
lessening the distance between themselves and the oriental 
shore. It is very likely that each member keeps the officers 
of his company informed of his whereabouts, and no doubt 
somewhat of his future plans, by correspondence or otherwise; 
but this would not restrain many from packing up and quit- 
ting these "barbarian shores" without paying the required 
fee. The managers of the companies understand the decep- 
tive traits of their countrymen sufficiently well to guard 
against a secret departure. They go to the fountain-head of 
the matter, and require the steamship companies to decline to 


carry any Chinese j^assenger back to China, under penalty of 
no patronage, unless he has a joassport, or permit, certifA'ing 
that his debts are paid, and he is honorably entitled to go 
home if he desires, from the company to which he belongs, 
dulj signed and sealed. 

The objects of these companies, as stated by their officers, 
are, as previously intimated, protective and charitable. They 
have agents in Hongkong, and perhaps at some other open 
ports of China, who look after the emigrants as they arrive 
from interior districts, preparatory to coming to California. 
Many of the Chinese who come here cannot raise the fifty- 
three dollars charged by the steamers for passage. To these 
the companies make advance j^ayments or loans, and after 
their arrival here, direct them to places where they may find 
employment, meantime caring for them by furnishing them 
the necessary money to live on. The persons who are thus 
aided contract with the company to return the money thus 
advanced when they shall have earned it, with a certain 
interest. It cannot be denied that this, as stated, is a jn-aise- 
"worthy object — a good principle upon which to found immi- 
gration societies. But if, as has been frequently charged, 
and is doubtless true in many instances, these generous 
motives are only a cloak to conceal from the victim and j^ublic 
a deep-laid and well-planned sclieme, to deprive these un- 
fortunate countrymen of liberty, by binding them, and, by 
the very force of circumstances, compelling them to perform 
certain labor, a number of years, for a specified small com- 
pensation, then the practice is simply damnable. 

The companies also provide for the return to, and interment 
in, their native soil, of the remains of deceased members. 
This arrangement is accomplished by the member jDaying to 
them a certain sum of money, sufficient to defray the expenses, 
for which it agrees to find the body (should the member die) 
and perform this sacred service, faithfully and honestly. Dis- 
eased and disabled members are also permitted to return to 
their friends at home, without the j)ayment of the usual five 
dollar fee, and in some instances the return passage money 
(twelve dollars) is also supi^lied them. 

Each company has an office or company house. Upon the 
arrival of a steamer from China, representatives of the different 
companies repair to the dock, — having j^reviously secured a 


number of express wagons to convey the baggage and passen- 
gers from the wharf to Chinatown — and there greet the new 
arrivals with good wishes and so forth. They learn from each 
where he is from — that is, what district in China — and after 
explaining to him the objects of the company (unless he has 
j)reviously been apprised of its existence by the agent in China), 
lie is enrolled as a member and escorted (by not only his 
friends but a large band of lawless hoodlums also) to the odor- 
ous jjrecincts of the Chinese quarter, where he will at leisure 
Tbe shown the sights of the modern Mecca. There is nothing 
that possesses such strange interest for the " Easterner " as 
scenes at the dock of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company, 
npon the arrival of a cargo of these heathen. 







THERE is, perhaps, no race of people less susceptible to 
the influences of Christianity than the Chinese. They 
are satisfied with their notions of life and its objects, and care 
not to receive further enlightenment. This is no doubt be- 
cause of their peculiar civilization, which to them is superior 
to any other. They, like we, think that other nations are be- 
hind them in progression, and consider our offers of instruction 
in religion, very presumptions. But, unlike us, they are con- 
tent with their own beliefs and are not solicitous concerning' 
others. They are willing for the people of other nations to 
worship whatever or whomever they choose, asking of them 
nothing, only to be let alone. 

As a nation, the Chinese do not seem to have the common 
human desire to know how other nations do such and suck 
things, or what opinion they have of them. They are minus 
the questioning curiosity that is a characteristic of Americans 
particularly, and of Europeans generally. It is, therefore, veiy 
difficult for missionaries to make any progress towards Chris- 
tianizing this people. The Chinese who come to this countiy, 
wonderingly ask, why it is that we do not all live in accord- 
ance with the teachings of Christianity, if it is so good as our 
ministers proclaim it to be. When they see so many religious 
factions, all claiming to be the true interpreters of the religion 
of Christ, and besides these, so many jjersons who disregard all 
religious teachings, they very naturally conclude that our religion 
is only a secondary matter at best, and become indifferent con- 
cerning it. If there is any choice in the two plans favored by 
the churches and religious people, — that of sending mission- 
aries to China to labor among the jDeople in their own land, or 


that of encouraging Chinese immigration, so as to bring them 
under the direct influence of a Christian nation, we would say 
that the former mode would be preferable; for the holy exam- 
ple of the missionary would have more influence, it would 
seem, where he was the only representative of Christianity, 
than where his precepts and teaching were constantly belied by 
his irreligious fellows. The Chinese, no doubt, look upon 
every American as a Christian; they therefore cannot reconcile 
the differences that exist among them. 


Nearly every religious denomination holding to the Protest- 
ant faith, has established mission houses for the Chinese, or 
aided by contributions, their establishment. The first of these 
was founded as early as 1852, by the Rev. William Speer, D. D. 
— a missionary from Canton, China, who understood the Chi- 
nese language thoroughly, and was well acquainted with the 
character of the race. This mission was sustained by the 
Presbyterian Church, and under Dr. Speer's management a 
Chinese Presbyterian Church was organized in 1853, for the 
benefit of the Chinese converts. Dr. Speer's health failing 
about this time, he was comjielled to abandon his charge, and 
the mission was no longer supported. Most of the members 
of the church returned to China, while a few took letters to 
the First Presbyterian Church in the city. 

Six years later. Rev. A. "W. Loomis undertook, successfully, 
the reorganization of the church, and assumed the manage- 
ment of the mission. Since that time, eighty Chinese have 
become members of this church, five of whom have died, and 
seven have returned to China with letters to churches there. 
Of the remaining sixty-eight, there are five who have been 
absent so long without communicating with the officers of the 
church, that their names have been dropped from the roll. 
There are, therefore, sixty-three out of eighty, remaining in 
good standing, and who are, as far as may be judged, exem- 
plary and active Christians. At other towns in the State, forty- 
five have been received into the Presbyterian fold. We quote 
from a letter written by one of the pastors of an interior mis- 
sion to the Secretary of the California Chinese Mission. Speak- 
ing of the Chinese members he says, "The officers of the 
church have as much confidence in theii' integrity as in that of 


other members. At their examination, we felt that they under- 
stood the elements of the Christian religion quite as intelli- 
gentl}' as American Christians." Another Presbyterian minis- 
ter, interested somewhat directly in the Chinese missions, says 
of the converts : "It was the remark of our Session when 
they were examined (at different times) that rarely have any 
presented themselves as candidates for church membership 
who gave more satisfactory evidence of a radical change of 
heart, and of a knowledge of the important doctrines of 
grace." * * "If our Lord's test is to be applied to the 
converted Chinese — ' By their /"?'ut^8 ye shall knoAv them' — I 
know of no class of Christians from any nation, that gives 
more conclusive proof of such a change as that text requires, 
than do those from this heathen people, whose habits and 
spirit I have had opportunity for these three years very care- 
fully to study." These statements made by prominent minis- 
ters, are corroborated by the pastors of the various missions 
and Chinese churches. 

Besides those converts who have connected themselves with 
the church, there are jjerhaps fifteen others who have not yet 
been baptized, but who attend the services at the missions 
regularly, and are thought to be Christians. Including these, 
the total number of Chinese converts resulting from the mis- 
sionary work of the Presbyterian Church, is one hundred and 

This mission sustains a school for the Chinese also, and an 
asylum in which Chinese women are placed after having been 
recovered from a life of infamy. The regular attendance at 
the school in the city, is considered good — the average number 
daily attending being over one hundred. 

An undenominational societ}^ of ladies sustains and conducts 
a school for children which has an attendance of forty-one 
children — twenty of whom were born in California. 

There is a Chinese Young Men's Christian Association, hav- 
ing its headquarters in the city, and aiding numerous branches 
in different towns on the coast. The membership of this or- 
ganization is about five hundred. It has both active and asso- 
ciate members, and is undenominational. "Any Chinaman, 
of good moral character, willing to forsake idolatry, and desir- 
ing to associate with Christians, may become an associate mem- 
ber, having all the j)rivileges of other members, except the 


light to vote." Rev. Dr. Loomis says of it: "This associa- 
tion continues to maintain a vigorous life. It has members 
and branch associations widely scattered over the country. 
Their constitution contains a very good creed, and their rules 
are wholesome and well enforced. Their rooms are a pleasant 
resort, and at least three times each week resound with the 
voices of devout praise and earnest supplication. During the 
holidays, they hold meetings in rotation with their brethren of 
other missions, and also go out upon the streets to sing and 

Twenty-five Chinese women have accepted, voluntarily, the 
protection offered by the asylum provided for them, and, so 
far as known, not one has returned to her former life. Five 
of them have been united in marriage to Christian Chinamen, 
and are apparently as good "keepers at home" as the hus- 
bands could have hoped to find. 

The Methodist Mission under charge of Eev. O. H. Gibson, 
and maintained by the Methodist Episcopal Missionary So- 
ciety, was founded in 1869. The church organization con- 
nected with this mission has a membership numbering about 
thirty-five. A Chinese preacher conducts the Sabbath services 
in the Chinese language. This mission has provided a room 
where preaching and prayer-meeting is conducted dail}', ac- 
cording to a plan satisfactorily adopted in China. Into this 
room the Chinese come and go with perfect freedom, no for- 
mality or ceremony whatever being observed. They sit or 
stand, with hats on or off, smoking their pipes or cigars, if 
they choose, and pass in and out as often as they like during 
the service. This room is also vised as a day school for 
Chinese, at which there is an attendance of from fifteen to 
twenty pupils. At the evening school, held at the mission 
house, the average attendance is eighty. 

The mission work of this denomination, among the Chinese 
vyomen, has been quite successful. Seventy-five females, the 
youngest of whom was only eight years old, have been re- 
ceived by it. These were all kept perforce in houses of pros- 
titution, and subjected to most inhuman treatment. Those 
engaged in this work of restoring to virtuous lives the enslaved 
Chinese females, express great satisfaction at the result of 
their labor. It is very gratifying to know that when they 
have once escaped from their captors, they never again return 


to the life of sin, except by being kidnapped and driven to it 
by violent abuse. 

The Baptist Church maintains a Chinese mission at an 
annual expenditure of $2,500. The attendance at its school 
varies from one hundred to one hundred and twenty-five. In 
connection with the school is a library, containing five hun- 
dred volumes in Chinese and English. 

A mission has also been established by the Congregational 
Churches of the city, which is conducted under the name of 
" The California Chinese Mission," and is auxiliaii^tt> the 
American INIissionary Association. Several schools are sup- 
ported by this mission, both in the city and interior towns. 

The Roman Catholic Church, commonly the leader in mis- 
sionary work, has not a single mission or school conducted 
under its auspices, for the benefit of the Chinese. As long 
ago as 1853, a Catholic Chinese preacher. Father Thomas, by 
name, came to San Francisco from Siam, for the purpose of 
engaging in missionary labor among the Chinese population 
of California. He labored for some time in this field, but 
with such ill success that he finally abandoned the cause and 
returned to his own country. Father Yalentine, an Italian 
Catholic priest, also engaged for a time in the endeavor to 
convert the Chinese to the Catholic faith; but, like his prede- 
cessor, failed signally in the attempt, and ceased his efi'orts. 
So, to-day, the missionaiy work among this strange people is 
confined to the Protestant denominations. 

The number of schools, religious and otherwise, maintained 
in San Francisco, by the different churches and missionary' so- 
cieties, especially for the Chinese, is about fifteen. Almost 
every church organization, that has a house of worship, has, in 
addition to the regular sabbath school and preaching services 
on the Lord's day, a Chinese sabbath school. Where the at- 
tendance is good, and the interest in the exercises is kept up, 
it is certainly a strange and interesting scene to witness the 
Chinese men and boys (few females attend) engage in the Chris- 
tian worship by song and prayer, as such services are usually 
conducted. As we look upon the array of really eager and 
animated faces that have assembled to learn of God and 
heaven, the apt poem. Gyp Tie is always brought to mind. 
Little Gyp was always casting celestial glances heavenward. 


and it was his delight to relieve his pent uj) soul of its excess 
of heavenl}^ desires by singing in sweet accents, 

" I want to be au angel, and witli the angels stand, 
A clown upon mj^ folhead, a balp -within my hand." 

But in an evil moment little Gyp's angelic quahties all left him 
and he carried off his mistress's silver plate. Therefore, as we 
said before, when we witness this gathering of celestial mor- 
tals, striving, we hope, to reach finally, a celestial immortality, 
we think of little Gyp Tie, and wonder how many of these be- 
fore us would, under favorable circumstances, give up their 
ichance of celestial bliss, for a few material specimens of value, 
in the shape of silver sjDOons, and gold and silver ornaments. 

The total number of Chinese converted to CJiristianity on the 
Pacific Coast, exceeds, a very little, three hundred. The half 
•oi this number, it is claimed, were converted during the last 
three years — thus showing that results are beginning to mul- 








EATHEN that he is, John Chinaman is wise in diplomacy, 

His tact is wonderful, and he comprehends matters of 
disj^ute relating in any way to himself, even more readily than 
his sujDcrior white brother. "We call him unprogressive, but 
he moves steadily onward, slowly, but sure. He is by no 
means ignorant of the agitation his presence in the United 
States has excited, even in the halls of Congress; but except 
when emergency requires him to speak or act, he is silent and 
passive. When, however, his voice is raised in his own be- 
half, the tone is so bland and his words so amicably and hon- 
estly spoken, that those unacquainted wuth his peculiar re- 
sources are convinced beyond doubt that instead of being an evil, 
he is a valuable acquisition to the country; and all the noise 
and clamour that the citizens of California have raised against 
him is certainly uncalled for. 

He promptly meets every question that is sprang against 
him, in so docile and delicately modest, a manner; with a noble 
humility of spirit, yet with an occasional outcropping of power 
that indicates his latent strength, that does not fail to awaken 
a sympathizing sentiment for him among the intelligent men 
of the nation. 

Unquestionably, his defensive tactics are superior. His 
manner of meeting his oj)ponents, indicates that he is a stu- 
dent of human nature; that he has analyzed the American 
character, and discovered those points that are not fortified 
against influences that he, to a degree, controls. He therefore 
plays upon those feelings and passions that he deems suscep- 
tible to his touch, and he does it in so quiet a way that he is 
not discovered until he has produced the desired effect. 


The late agitation against Chinese immigration has done 
much to develop this genius in him. Every document that has- 
been publicly circulated as a protest against him, he has an- 
swered with such apparent candor, that, if he has not entirely 
destroyed the influence it was meant to exert, as a check to 
further Chinese immigration, he has, at least, modified public 
sentiment so as to avert speedy action relating thereto. 

His answer to the address and resolutions of the great Anti- 
Chinese mass meeting, held in San Francisco not long since, 
is characterized by its simplicity, terseness, and candid tone, 
and particularly, by its modest dignity. There is also in it a 
half concealed vein of satire, that renders the document esj)e- 
cially effective. Indeed, it may be called as uccess, in a liter- 
ary sense, for it is an example of the use of language that 
some of our writers of acknowledged merit might study with 
profit. It is logical withal; from a Chinese standpoint it pre- 
sents almost ever}' argument in favor of Chinese immigration, 
and aptly answers the statements uttered in the address of the 
citizens en 7nasse assembled. But it has misstatements and 
exaggerations, and omits to mention some of the vices and 
evils of the Chinese, as will be seen by referring to the pre- 
ceding chapters in this volume, relating to the Chinese of San 

We give the memorial in full, as it was forwarded to the 
President of the United States, as it tells in as small space as 
it could be given, the opinion of the more intelligent Chinese 
in Cahfornia, as relates to their presence in America, and the 
advantages, both to themselves and the countiy, of Chinese 
immigration. Besides, we discover in it some of their notions 
of how our governmental affairs should be conducted, and. 
their interpretation of the treaty stipulations existing between. 
China and America. 


To His Excellency U. S. Gkant, Peesident of the United States ot- 

Sie: In the absence of any Consular representative, we, the under- 
signed, in the name and in behalf of the Chinese people now in America, 
would most respectfully present foryoin* consideration the following state- 
ments regarding the subject of Chinese emigration to this country: 

I. We understand that it has always been the settled policy of your hon- 
orable Government to welcome emigration to your shores from all coun- 
tries, without let or hindrance. The Chinese are not the only people who 
have crossed the ocean to seek a residence in this land. 


II. The treaty of amity and peace between the United States and China 
makes special mention of the rights and privileges of Americans in China, 
and also of the rights and privileges of Chinese in America. 

III. American steamers, subsidized by your honorable Government, 
have visited the ports of China, and invited our people to come to this 
country to find employment and improve their condition. Our people 
have been coming to this country for the last twenty-five years, but up to 
the present time there are only 150,000 Chinese in all these United States, 
60,000 of whom are in California, and 30,000 in the city of San Francisco. 

IV. Our people in this country, for the most part, have been peaceable, 
law-abiding and industrious. They performed the largest part of the un- 
skilled labor in the construction of the Central Pacific Eailroad, and also 
of all other railroads on this coast. They have found useful and remu- 
nerative employment in all the manufacturing establishments of this coast, 
in agricultural pursuits, and in family service. While benefiting them- 
selves with the honest reward of their daily toil, they have given satisfac- 
tion to their employers and have left all the results of their industry to 
enrich the State. They have not displaced white laborers from these posi- 
tions, but have simply multiiDlied the industrial enterprises of the country. 

V. The Chinese have neither attempted nor desired to interfere with the 
established order of things in this country, either of politics or religion. 
They have opened no whiskey saloons for the purpose of dealing out poison 
and degrading their fellow-men. They have promptly' paid their duties, 
their taxes, their rents, and their debts. 

VI. It has often occurred, about the time of the State and general elec- 
tions, that political agitators have stirred up the minds of the ^leople in 
hostility to the Chinese, but formerly the hostility has usually subsided 
after the elections were over. 

VII. At the present time an intense excitement and bitter hostility 
against the Chinese in this land, and against further Chinese emigration, 
has been created in the minds of the people, led on bj' His Honor the 
Mayor of San Francisco aud his associates in office, and approved by His 
Excellency the Governor, and other great men of the State. These great 
men gathered some 20,000 of the people of this city together on the even- 
ing of April 5th, and adopted an address and resolutions against Chinese 
emigration. They have since ai^pointed three men (one of whom we un- 
■derstand to be the author of the address and resolutions) to carry that 
;address and those resolutions to j'our Excellency, and to present further 
.objections, if possible, against the emigration of the Chinese to this 

VIII. In that address numerous charges are made against our people, 
some of which are highly colored and sensational, and others, having no 
foundation whatever in fact, are only calculated to mislead honest minds 
aud create an unjust prejudice against us. We wish most respectfully to 
call your attention, and through you the attention of Congress, to some of 
the statements of that remarkable paper, and ask a careful comparison of 
the statements there made with the facts of the case. 

(a.) It is charged against us that not one virtuous Chinawoman has 
been brought to this country, and that here we have no wives nor chil- 
dren. The fact is, that already a few hundred Chinese families have been 


brought here. These are all chaste, pure, keepers-at-home, not known on 
the public street. There are also among us a few hundred, perhaps a thou- 
sand, Chinese children born in America. The reason why so few of our 
families are brought to this country is because it is contrary to the custom 
and against the inclination of virtuous Chinese women to go so far from 
Lome, and because the frequent outbursts of popular indignation against 
our people have not encouraged us to bring our families -with us against 
their will. Quite a number of Chinese prostitutes have been brought to 
this country by unprincipled Chinamen, but these at first were brought 
from China at the instigatiou and for the gratification of white men. And 
even at the present time it is commonly reported that a part of the 
proceeds of this villainous trafiic goes to enrich a certain class of men 
belonging to this honorable nation — a class of men, too, who are under 
solemn obligations to suppress the whole vile business, and who certainly 
have it in their power to suppress it if they so desired. A few years ago, 
our Chinese merchants tried to send these prostitutes back to China, and 
succeeded in getting a large number on board the outgoing steamer, but a 
certain lawyer of your honorable nation (said to be the author and bearer 
of these resolutions against our people), in the employ of unprincipled 
Chinamen, procured a writ of habeas corpus, and brought all those women 
on shore again, and the courts decided that they had a right to stay in this 
coiantry if they so desired. Those women are still here, and the only rem- 
edy for this evil, and also for the evil of Chinese gambling, lies, so far a3 
we can see, in an honest and impartial administration of municipal govern- 
ment, in all its details, even including the Police Department. If officers 
would refuse bribes, then unprincipled Chinamen could no longer purchase 
immunity from the punishment of their crimes. 

(b.) It is charged against us that we have purchased no real estate. 
The general tone of public sentiment has not been such as to encourage us 
to invest in real estate, and yet our people have purchased and now own 
over $800,000 worth of real estate in San Francisco alone. 

(c.) It is charged against us that we eat rice, fish, and vegetables. It 
is true that our diet is slightly diff'erent from the people of this honorable 
country ; our tastes in these matters are not exactly alike, and cannot be 
forced. But is that a sin on our part of sufficient gravity to be brought 
before the President and Congress of the United States ? 

(d.) It is charged that the Chinese are no benefit to this country. Are 
the railroads built by Chinese labor no benefit to the country ? Are the 
manufacturing establishments, largely worked by Chinese, no benefit to 
this country ? Do not the results of the daily toil of a hundred thousand 
men increase the riches of this country ? Is it no benefit to this country 
that the Chinese annually pay over $2,000,000 duties at the Custom-house 
of San Francisco ? Is not the $200,000 annual poll-tax paid by the Chi- 
nese any benefit ? And are not the hundreds of thousands of dollars taxes 
on personal property, and the foreign miners' tax, annually paid to the 
revenues of this country, any benefit ? 

(e.) It is charged against us that the Six Chinese Companies have se- 
cretly established judicial tribunals, jails and prisons, and secretly exercise 
judicial authority over the people. This chai'ge has no foundation in fact. 


These Six Companies were originally organized for the purposes of mutnaf 
protection and care of our people coming to and going from this country. 
The Six Companies do not claim, nor do they exercise any judicial author- 
ity whatever, but are the same as any tradesmen or protective and benevo- 
lent societies. If it were true that the Six Companies exercise judicial 
authority over the Chinese people, then why do all the Chinese people 
still go to American tribunals to adjust their differences, or to secure the 
punishment of their criminals ? Neither do these companies import either 
men or women into this coiantry. 

(f.) It is charged that all Chinese laboring men are slaves. This is not 
true in a single instance. Chinamen labor for bread. They pursue all 
kinds of industries for a livelihood. Is it so then that every man laboring 
for his livelihood is a slave? If these men are slaves, then all men labor- 
ing for wages are slaves. 

(g.) It is charged that the Chinese commerce brings no benefit to Amer- 
ican bankers and importers. But the fact is that an immense trade is 
carried on between China and the United States by American merchants, 
and all the carrying business of both countries, whether by steamers, sail- 
ing vessels or railroads, is done by Americans. No China ships are en- 
gaged in the carrying traffic between the two countries. Is it a sin to bo 
charged against us that the Chinese merchants are able to conduct their 
mercantile business on their own capital? And is not the exchange of 
millions of dollars annually by the Chinese with the banks of this city any 
benefit to the banks? 

(h.) We respectfully ask a careful consideration of all the foregoing- 
statements. The Chinese are not the only people, nor do they bring the 
only evils that now afflict this country. And since the Chinese people are 
nowhere, under solemn treaty rights, we hope to ba protected, according to 
the terms of this treaty; but if the Chinese are considered detrimental to the 
best interests of this country, and if our presence here is offensive to the Amer- 
ican people, let there be a modification of existing treaty relations between 
China and the United States, either prohibiting or limiting further Chinese 
emigration, and, if desirable, requiring also the gradual retirement of the 
Chinese people now here from this country. Such an arrangement, though 
not without embarrassments to both parties, we believe would not be alto- 
gether unacceptable to the Chinese government, and doubtless it would be 
very acceptable to a certain class of people in this honorable country. 

With sentiments of profound respect, 

Lek Wing How, 

President Sam Yup Company. 

Lee Chee Kwan, 

President 'i'ung Wo Company. 

Law Yee Chung, 

PrcBident Kong Chow Company, 

Chan Leung Kok, 

President Wing Yung Company. 

Lee Cheong Chip, 

President Hop Wo Company. 

Chan Kong Chew, 

President Yan Wo Company. 

Lee Tong Hay, 
President Chinese Young Men's Christian Association. 



A striking' instance of Chinese enterprise was tliat of one 
Ah You, who was, upon good and sufficient heathen evidence, 
found guilty of larceny, and sentenced to seiwe a term of 
three years in the penitentiary. Ah You proved to be a model 
prisoner, and by good conduct soon rose to the preferment of 
assistant in the kitchen, where he was a great favorite. His 
imprisonment was, therefore, not to be considered a hard 
punishment; for Ah You, besides receiving good clothing, 
and an ample supply of palatable food, was also acquiring a 
knoAvledge of American cookery, so that when the star of 
liberty again gleamed upon him through the open prison door, 
he could go forth a free man, with no fear of having to remain 
long without profitable employment. This, of itself, was an 
example of "making the best of the situation" that is seldom 
equaled; but for real enterprise and adaptability, what is fur- 
ther related of the wily Ah You and his fellows, has not 
hitherto found a parallel. 

When two years of his sentence had passed, a rumor was 
circulated, and gained credence, that Ah You was an inno- 
cent victim of the law; that he had not even participated in 
the crime that he was atoning for, and that the real criminal, 
another Chinaman, was breathing the sweet pure air of lib- 
erty, unsuspected of any evil deed. 

Investigation revealed the fact that Ah You was certainly 
guiltless, but knew the guilty party, and had, by prearrange- 
ment with him, voluntarily acce^Dted the sentence, ujDon the 
condition that he should pay to a person appointed by him the 
sum of $3.00 per day for each and every day of his sentence. 
By the terms of the contract therefore Ah You received, at the 
expiration of his imprisonment, $3,285, coin in hand; and 
besides, had become a skillful kitchen servant, which was an 
additional capital, sufficient to yield him a livelihood. 

This would hardly be looked upon by an American as a 
good speculation, but to Ah You it was not only a luxiu'ious 
epoch in his life, each day bringing with it the good things 
necessary to a comfortable existence, but the bright anticipa- 
tions that were constantly before his mind, the glittering- 
treasure that would be dropped into his hand, and friendly 
press his eager palm, as soon as he was without the jDrison 
walls, were no doubt a source of delightful contemplation. 


and transformed that wbicli was meant for a punishment into 

The evidence given at the trial of the foregoing case of Ah 
You, that resulted in his conviction and imprisonment, shows, 
moreover, how successful the heathen witnesses are in manu- 
facturing any kind of testimony desired. The statements 
made by the witnesses, settling the crime upon Ah You, were 
clear and concise, and so honestly uttered that there was no 
doubt in the minds of judge or jury as to his guilt. 

Those who stain their hands with human blood for the 
money they will receive as a reward for the murder of an 
offensive fellow-heathen, manifest a similar enterprising dispo- 
sition to that of Ah You. Occasionally, though not frequently, 
a notice is jDOsted up publicly in Chinatown, entitled, "Re- 
ward." This is a red paper document written in Chinese 
characters, and might be briefly translated into English as 
follows : 

To the person or persons, killing Ah Lung (or whoever the oflfensive 
person may be), we will pay the sum of $500. 

(Signed) Wah Kb, 

Sing Lee. 

It is understood, privately, between the party undertaking 
the murder and the persons offering the reward, that if the 
murderer is arrested, good counsel shall be provided for him 
and every effort made to secure his release; if he be imprisoned 
they will pay him a sufficient amount of money to recomjDeuse 
him; or if he be hanged, they will send a specified amount of 
money to his relatives in China. When such a reward is 
offered, the person whose life is sought seldom escapes. For- 
tunately, such instances of revenge are rare. 

Rival factions of the Chinese, sometimes come into hostile 
contact, and a bloody encounter ensues, during which, knives, 
hatchets, pistols and shot-guns, not onl}'" create consternation, 
but make sad havoc in the ranks of both parties. At such 
times the savage nature of the "Heathen Chinee " is uppermost, 
and when wrought up to an ecstasy of wrath by the spirit of 
revenge, a devilish smile overspreads the face, and there is a 
sparkling in the eye, like unto the lurid flashes emitted from 
the fires of hell, that transforms John Chinaman's celestial 
countenance into the visaere of a demon. 


As we now dismiss tlie "Heathen Chinee" from further 
mention in these pages, except by casual allusion, we have an 
unsatisfied feeling within us, occasioned no doubt by the 
thought we have devoted to him; for we have proceeded in 
our investigations into his character just so far as to learn that 
he is encased in an armor that is impregnable to any onslaught 
we may lead. We have jjenetrated just far enough into the 
mysteries that are a j)art of his nature, to awaken our curiosity 
into active life, and are now tormented by the restrictions 
that we are forced to lay upon that unruly member of our 
mental being. So we dismiss him to the tender mercies of a 
scrutinizing public, hoping that our curiosity will be satisfied 
by the solution that it will oSev, of the problem originated by 
the " Heathen Chinee." 





THE growth of the book, stationery and publishing house 
of A. L. Bancroft & Co. is at once a striking illustration 
of California enteri^rise, and a credit to the culture of the 
Coast. A large book-house can be built up only in an intelli- 
gent community. 


The house of Bancroft & Co. was founded in 1856, by Mr. 
H. H. Bancroft, under the firm name of H. H. Bancroft & 
Co., booksellers. It occupied the small store No. 151 Mont- 
gomery Street, afterwards and under the new system of uum- 
beriug, No. GOO. Three years later, Mr. Bau croft established 
another store at 146 Clay Street, old number, to do business 
in stationery only, and jDlaced it under the charge of a younger 
brother, Mr. A. L. Bancroft, at that time a boy of nineteen 
years. In 1860, the two branches of the business Avere united 
under the style of H. H. Bancroft & Co., booksellers and 

The beginning was modest and unpretending enough, but in 
a very short time the business outgrew the limits of the sales- 
room, and began "annexing territory " until it occupied the 
whole building. All San Franciscans, of ten years residence, 
will remember the old store on Montgomery Street; dark 
uneven, with stairs in the most unexpected places, cut up by 
shelving running in all directions, and every inch of space 
utilized — the whole establishment as busy and orderly as a 
beehive. The closest and most accurate organization pre- 
vailed everywhere, the business, even at that early date — for 
San Francisco was yet in her teens — being divided into classi- 
fied departments, with a competent manager at the head of 

However, economize and turn and jDatch as you may, you 


cannot always keep a growing boy in boy's clothes; and the 
time came when the business of the house absolutely demanded 
more room for a healthy growth. Accordingly, in 1869, the 
firm began the erection of a large and elegant building on the 
south side of Market, between Third and Foui'th Streets. At 
that time, the mercantile business of the city was mainly con- 
fined to Montgomery, Kearny and Sansome Streets, north of 
Bush. The San Franciscans themselves, except a few far- 
sighted sj)eculators, although wont to speak with obtrusive 
confidence, had little realization of the future growth of the 
city, or the direction in which it would tend. There was a 
good deal of surprise, and even merriment, at the choice of 
such a location. "Bancrofts are going to move their store 
to the country," was a common joke in the city, and dealers 
in the southern counties rejoiced that the house was getting so 
much nearer as to materially diminish freight charges. Only 
seven years have jDassed, and the shrewd foresight of the head 
of the house has been abundantly vindicated. The leading 
hotels, the new City Hall (yet incomplete), and many of the 
finest stores, are on Market Street; the water and railroad travel 
of nearly the entire State enters the city at its foot, and busi- 
ness is fast centering on this magnificent highway. 

At the time of moving to the new store, 1870, the style of 
the firm was changed from H. H. Bancroft & Co. to its present 
name, A. L. Bancroft & Co., Mr. H. H. Bancroft retiring from 
the active management of the business, to devote his time and 
fortune to his great historical work. The present head of the 
Iiouse is Mr. A. L. Bancroft. 

Upon moving into their new building, the departments of 
printing, lithographing and binding, were added to the busi- 
ness. Here, as in the old store, everything is thoroughly 
oi-ganized and systematized. 


The building is one of the most elegant and conspicuous in 
the city. It is substantially built of brick, with ornamental 
iron front, in size, 170 feet deep, with width of 75 feet on Market 
Street, and 80 feet on Stevenson Street; five stories in height, 
v^ith basement of full size. The business is divided into the 
following departments, viz: "Wholesale,'' "retail," "pub- 
lishing," "law," "educational," "bank and official," "music," 


"subscrij)tioii/' "printing and lithograpliing," and "binding." 
Each dei^artment is under a manager, with a fiJl corj^s of 
assistants. The number of employees in the establishment 
ranges from one hundred and fifty to two hundred persons. 

The basement is devoted to the storage of goods and the 
stereotype plates and unbound stock of their own jDublica- 
tions. It also contains the engine and artesian well, and is 
connected by an elevator with the floors above. 

The first floor is the general salesroom, 170 feet deep and 
35 feet wide, with a gallery running completely around it, 
filled with goods from floor to ceiling. A stranger entering 
this room, and seeing the immense number and variety of 
books displayed, cannot fail to draw a conclusion compliment- 
ary to the intelligence and liberality of the people of the Coast. 
On this floor are the desks of the wholesale, retail, law, and 
bank and official departments. 

The second floor is devoted to blank -books, stationery in 
bulk, and musical instruments. It also contains the offices of 
the jDroprietor, the cashier and bookkeepers, and the publish- 
ing, subscription, and musical departments. 

The third floor is devoted entirely to printing, lithograph- 
ing, engraving, and all the branches of a first-class printing 
and book-making establishment. The bindery and blank- 
book manufactory occupy the fourth floor. Both the bindery 
and printing-office are fitted up with the most improved ma- 
chinery, and turn out work equal in every respect to the pro- 
ductions of the best houses in the East. 

The fifth floor is occupied by the Pacific Coast Library of 
Mr. H. H. Bancroft. This is also the " workshop" where Mr. 
Bancroft pursues his literary labor. 

The house has a long list of publications, embracing law, 
medical, educational, subscription, and miscellaneous works, 
of every descrij)tion. These books are the production, in al- 
most every instance, of Pacific Coast talent, as well as capital, 
and they compare favorably, both in merit and success, with, 
similar works jDublished in the East. 






THE Hoodlum had his origin in San Francisco. He is the 
offsiDring of San Francisco society. What particular phase 
in social life possesses the necessary fertility to produce such 
fruit is not obvious. It is certain, however, that the seed has 
been sown in productive soil, for the harvest is abundant. 

The hoodlum has been called ''a ruffian in embryo." It 
■would be a better definition to call him simply a ruffian. He 
has all the essential qualities of the villain. He is acquainted 
with crime in all its forms. The records of vice are his text- 
books. He is a free-born American in its widest sense. He 
knows no restraint and obeys no superior. He is too large for 
the parents' lash and too small for the cudgel of outraged citi- 
zens. He is at that critical period in life that forms an ejDoch 
in the history of most persons — neither boy nor man. Hith- 
erto he has had no defined road to travel. His course has led 
over broad undulating meadows. He could scamper over the 
level plain, follow the tortuous hill-road, or labor through the 
sloughs and marshes, as his disposition prompted. Now there 
are two roads, and he is at the point of divergence. One leads 
to honor and usefulness, the other to dishonor and ruin. He 
is of that class who follow the latter. This is the full-grown 
hoodlum. There are smaller members of the same family; 
there are also female hoodlums. It is really wonderful — this 
growth of hoodlumism. A few years ago it was unknown; 
now it is met in every department of social life. "Young 
America" was a wayward prodigy; the hoodlum is the youth- 
ful graduate in vice and crime. 

He is of no particular nationality; but if he is not American 
born, he is Americanized. His parentage may be noble and 
of high repute, or he may be a bastard. The millionaire, 


whose home is a mausion, contributes a son to the ranks, as 
well as the poor wretch who inhabits a hovel. 


The hoodlum is met more commonly on dimly-lighted street 
-corners; in front of the "corner grocery" (in fact, he is a fix- 
ture here); on vacant lots; in dark alley-ways and nooks; at 
the entrance to suburban public halls, and on public convey- 
ances, during excursions and picnics. While the sun shines, he 
withdraws from public highways, and is found in isolated 
streets, sunning himself by a wall and planning with his asso- 
ciates the mischief of the coming night. At such times he is 
mopish and apparently inoffensive. A passing Chinaman 
might be made aware of his presence by a whizzing missile, 
but even this amusement he generally foregoes until the cur- 
tain of night has fallen. On holidays, however, and on Sun- 
days, his daylight deeds sometimes surjDass his most daring 
midnight crimes. But at night he is in his glory. He was 
reared in the darkness and he acknowledges its friendliness 
and protection. 

So numerous and bold are the hoodlums in San Francisco 
that it is dangerous for a single individual to travel a quiet 
street late at night. They congregate on street corners, drop 
insulting remarks at jDassers-by, ogle the ladies and stone or 
beat the peaceful Chinese. They swagger up and down the 
streets, frightening from their pathway any belated citizen, 
ringing door-bells, unhinging gates, yelling and singing ob- 
scene songs, uttering horrid oaths — striking terror to the hearts 
of all would-be sleepers for blocks away. They rifle the pock- 
ets, and make footballs of any inebriated straggler that hap- 
pens in their way; not unfrequently clubbing and robbing 
business men as they return from their stores or offices. Street 
cars are boarded by them, the driver "brained," and the pas- 
sengers put to flight. Working-girls and women, returning 
late from the factory or workshop), are insulted and sometimes 
outraged. Policemen are overpowered and beaten by them. 
They are the dread of all peacefullj'-disposed persons. 

The hoodlum is the sworn enemy of the Chinamen. Strik- 
ing them down with their fists, jerking their queues, belabor- 
ing them with clubs and hurling cobble-stones at them, is 
their most favorite pastime. 



The social mechanism lacks a moral cog, that produces such 
results. Parental authority is a rare virtue in San Francisco. 
The "home circle" has become a myth. Home attractions do 
not exist; or where they do exist, have lost the wonted charm. 
That sacred word, home is fast losing its significance. Many 
families have no home. They live in hotels and boarding 
houses, or dwell in lodging houses and eat at restaurants, and 
as a consequence the family never meets around the home 

Children must have amusement, and if the home-folk do 
not provide for them in this regard, they go elsewhere to find 
it. "They are allowed to run wild on the streets." They 
grow bold from necessity. Cast, as they are upon their own 
resources for amusement, they must needs make their way 
through the world. And they do it, unguided by experienced 
and wiser persons. Hence they become "fast" and uncon- 
trolable ere they have outgrown their baby lispings. "Now I 
lay me down to sleep," coming in soft and loving accents from 
a mother's lips, as she bends low over the couch of her child, 
would be strange and startling words in many family cham- 
bers in this " city by the Golden Gate." The name of God is 
oftener heard by the little prattlers while at play on the street 
than at their mother's knee. They know not of reverence. 
They are profane from infancy; they have quick ears to catch 
the floating slang, and where parental restraint is not felt, they 
soon learn to commit petty misdeeds. 

This, perhaps, partly solves the problem, whence this hood- 
lumism ? 

■ How to check hoodlumism is a problem that sorely puzzles 
the brain of the moralist. We do not propose to try to solve 
it. It might, however, be well to draw the legal reins a little 
tighter. Reclaim the little wanderers (who would do harm 
Tout cannot) by removing from their presence the larger, whose 
example they aspire to follow. Treat with severity the crim- 
inals in the well-grown ranks. Make the law a terror to them. 
Should ordinary penalties fail to have the desired effect, estab- 
lish a whipping-post, as has been suggested, and let the lash 
be freely applied. This would produce a wondrous change in 
the morals of some "young bloods." 

But the police judge cannot check this virulent disease; 


neither can the policemen. They may control it. This would 
be well. But to exterminate it, the seed must be uprooted. 
The fountain-head whence flows this stagnant stream, must be 
purified. Society alone can do this. Society makes criminals, 
and it furnishes the criminal antidote. " Similia similibus 
curantur." Will society undertake it? That is the problem. 
Meantime it is well to urge and remind, for reforms are only 
effected by agitation. 







THE first number of the Overland Monthly, gave it the 
rank of a first-class literary periodical. It touched the 
popular chord — which is the secret spring that opens the way 
to success in any enterprise that seeks for support from the 

The idea of establishing in San Francisco a monthly maga- 
zine, devoted to the interests of the Pacific Coast, originated 
with Mr. A. Roman, the bookseller. Although he was aware 
that much capital and personal attention would be required to 
launch the enterprise, he was yet confident that it could be 
done. He therefore decided that the first number should issue 
on July 1st, 1868, and as a sort of advertisement or forerunner, 
circulated a paper setting forth the character of the magazine. 
The circular announced tiiat the contemplated periodical would 
"embrace to the fullest extent the comiiiercial and social inter- 
ests of California and the Pacific Coast; that every article pub- 
lished would be original, and paid for, and that only the best 
talent in the country would be emj^loyed." It further set forth 
that there would be three thousand copies distributed monthly 
until its permament circulation exceeded that number. 

The business men of the city cheerfully extended aid — some 
of them contributing very liberally — resulting in a guarantee 
of $900 monthly. Mr. Bret Harte was chosen as editor, with 
"W. C. Bartlett, of the Bulletin, and Noah Brooks, of the Alta, 
as assistants. 

It was decided that each number should contain 9G pages ; 
and although there were numerous aspirants to magazine writ- 
ing, it w^as found to be a difficult task to fill the first number 
with desirable original matter. The publisher, the editorial 


corps, and, in fact, all the literati of the city, -worked with a 
will; and although the labor performed was perhaps greater 
than could have been expected of inexperienced, writez's, there 
was yet a corajileteness and finish about the first number that 
certainly did much toward jjlacing the Overland in the ranks 
of the first class monthlies. 

Below is the table of contents with the names of con- 

A Breeze from the woods W . C. Bartlett 

Longing, a Poem Ina D. Coolbiitli 

By Bail Through France Sam. L. Clemens (Mark Twain) 

High Noon of the Empire Wm. V. Wells 

Art Beginnings on the Pacific B. P. Avery 

In the Sierras C. W. Stoddard 

The Diamond Maker of Sacramento ... Noah Brooks 

Family Resemblances and Dififerences John F. Swift 

Favoring Female Conventionalism T. H. Reardou 

San Francisco from the Sea Bret Harte 

Hawaiian Civilization Geo.- B. Merrill 

Dos Reales G.T.Shipley 

Eight Days at Thebes Samuel Williams 

A Leaf from a Chinese Novel J. T. Doj'en 

Following this were the editorial notes, under the general 
head " Etc." In this department, Mr. Harte, in a most happy 
train of logic, gives the reasons for adopting the name Over- 
land Monthly. He says : 

"It falls to my lot, at the very outset, to answer, on behalf of the pub- 
lishers, a few questions that have arisen in yie progress of this venture^ 
Why, for instance, is this magazine called the Overland Monthly ? It would, 
perhaps, be easier to say why it was not called by some of the thousand 
other titles suggested. I might explain how ' Pacific Monthly ' is hackneyed, 
mild in suggestion, and at best but a feeble echo of the ' Boston Atlantic; ' 
how the 'West,' Wide West,' and ' Western ' are already threadbare, and 
suggest to Eastern readers only Chicago and the Lakes; how ' Occidental ' 
and ' Chrysopolis ' are but cheap pedantry, and 'Sunset,' 'Sundown,' 
'Hesper,' etc., cheap sentiment; how 'California' — honest and direct 
enough— is yet too local to attract any but a small number of readers. I 
might prove that there was safety, at least, in the negative goodness of our 
present homely Anglo-Saxon title. But is there nothing more ? Turn 
your eyes to this map, made but a few years ago. Do you see this vast in- 
terior basin of the Continent, on which the boundaries of States and Terri- 
tories are less distinct than the names of wandering Indian tribes; do you 
Bee this broad zone reaching from Virginia City to St. Louis, as j'et only 
dotted by telegraph stations, whose names are familiar, but of whose locality 
we are profoundly ignorant? Here creeps the railroad, each day drawing 
tho West and East closer together. Do you think, owner of Oakland and^ 


San Francisco lots, that the vast current soon to pour along this narrow 
channel will be always kept within the bounds you have made for it ? Will 
not this mighty Nilus overflow and fertilize the surrounding desert ? Can 
you ticket every passenger through to San Francisco — to Oakland — to Sac- 
ramento — even to Virginia City ? Shall not the route be represented as 
well as the termini P And where our people travel, that is the highway of 
our thought. Will the trains be freighted only with merchandise, and shall 
we exchange nothing but goods ? Will not our civilization gain by the subtle 
overflowing current of Eastern refinement, and shall we not by the same 
channel, throw into Eastern exclusiveness something of our own breadth 
and liberality ? And if so, what could be more appropriate for the title of 
a literary magazine than to call it after this broad highway ? " 

He thus introduced the Bear that adorned the cover: 

"The bear who adorns the cover may be ' an ill-favored ' beast, whom 
' women cannot abide,' but he is honest withal. Take him, if you please, 
as the symbol of local primitive barbarism. He is crossing the track of the- 
Pacific Railroad, and has paused a moment to look at the coming engine of 
civilization and progress — which moves like a good many other engines of 
civilization and progress, with a prodigious shrieking and puffing — and ap- 
parently recognizes his rival and his doom. And yet, leaving the symbol 
out, there is much about your grizzly that is pleasant. The truth should, 
howevtr, be tested at a moment when no desire for self-preservation preju- 
dices the observer. In his placid moments, he has a stupid, good natured 
tranquillity, like (hat of the hills in midsummer, I am satisfied that his 
unpleasant habit of scalping with his fore paw is the result of contact with 
the degraded aborigines, and the effect of bad example on the untutored 
ursine mind. Educated, he takes quite naturally to the pole, but has lost 
his ferocity, which is perhaps after all the most respectable thing about a 
barbarian. As a cub he is playful and boisterous, and I have often thought 
was not a bad symbol of our San Francisco climate. Look at him well, for 
he is passing away. Fifty years, and he will be as extinct as the dodo or 

Then there was the department devoted to " Book Notices," 
virhich was fresh and entertaining. Thus, the first number of 
the Overland was introduced 'to a criticising public; and 
although there was much in its pages that revealed the tyro's 
work, yet it was favorably spoken of by able writers and crit- 
ics; its contents were copied and widely circulated; and the 
success was such as to inspire even greater efibrt in those inter- 
ested than was put forth in the laborious preparation of the 
first number. 


Californians, more than all others, were proud of the new 
magazine, and were glad to give it all the assistance possible. 
The subscription list therefore rapidly increased, and within 
six months it had a bona fide circulation of more than 3,000. 


Yet there were many difficulties to be met. Mr. Harte was a 
great worker, but be was so critically exact with bis own as 
well as with the writings of others, that printers and pubHsher 
were ofttimes sorely tried by the delay this caused in the me- 
chanical work on the magazine. 

Mr. Roman continued the publication of the Overland for 
about nine months, when his failing health compelled him to 
desist from giving it his personal supervision, and he trans- 
ferred it to Mr. John H. Carmany, in consideration of $7,500 
— this amount reimbursing his outlay, and yielding in addition 
a profit of $3,000. 

Mr. Harte still remained in the editorial chair, and the char- 
acter and style of the magazine continued the same. Each 
succeeding number was more sought for than the preceding, 
and, as a rule, received more favorable notice from critics and 
reviewers. Everything had apparently drifted into its proper 
channel, and there was no reason to feel otherwise than hope- 
ful, for the permanent success of the Overland seemed insui'ed. 

The ranks of contributors had been swelled by the enlist- 
ment of names not unknown in national literature, and some 
of those who had first tried their wings at its advent, had 
grown strong from oft-repeated flights. 

Under Mr. Harte's editorial sujoervision, the circulation of 
the magazine grew to nearly 10,000. However, when the hu- 
morous jDoem from the pen of Mr. Harte entitled, "The 
Heathen Chinee," made its appearance in the Overland, and 
was echoed throughout the whole land in magazine, review, 
metropolitan and country newspapers, the ponderous door to 
the Temple of Fame was thrown open to its author, and San 
Francisco no longer held him among her population. 

It wa^ in September, 1870, that this poem was published, 
and, early in the following year, Mr. Harte severed his connec- 
tion with the Overland, went East, and, there is little doubt, 
took with him much of the popularity the magazine had en- 
joyed while he was its editor. He chose to cast his lot among 
the older, and perhaps more cultured and refined literati of the 
East, and act in the less responsible capacity of contributor; 
while the editorship of the Overland reverted to Mr. Bartlett. 


The Overland Monthly did much to develop the native liter- 
ary talent that lurked dormant in the valleys, on the plains, 


among the mountain fastnesses, and in the bustling cities of 
California and the Pacific Coast. It made its appearance at 
the auspicious moment, as if a thing of destiny. If it had 
delaj-ed its coming, the talent that it attracted, might have 
grown pent up from long confinement, and found vent in the 
more pretentious periodicals beyond the Rocky Mountains; if 
it had come earlier, perhaps it would have found and drawn to 
it this same talent in a transitory state, passing through a self- 
refining process, in that crudeness that would have smothered 
the ambition of its possessors, and at the same time have 
wrecked the magazine project, almost at its inception. 

During the period of its successful existence, the Overland 
possessed above all else, a pleasing individuality. It was the 
Overland as the public first knew it, only that it grew stronger 
as it grew older, and its intercourse with the jDublic rendered 
it more polished and graceful. The literati of the Pacific Coast, 
and jjarticularly of San Francisco, had made it thus. Mr. 
Harte, as a leader in this new field, was well chosen. His ac- 
quaintance with, and experience on, the Coast, had well fitted 
him for the task imposed upon him; and this, with his literary 
ambition, led him rapidly forward to a general recognition. 

Messrs. Bartlett, Brooks and "Williams, with their practically 
acquired knowledge of the manners and customs of the people, 
and the varied resources of the country of the Pacific Coast, 
formed a trio whose well-trained pens did much toward secur- 
ing an audience for this representative of the California literati 
with the scholars of the East and Europe. The Overland was- 
the rostrum from which the literary talent of the Coast first 
addressed the world; the literati were the pillars that sup- 
ported it — each bearing each other, until they had separately 
grown self-supporting. 

Joaquin Miller, though yet in obscurity when the magazine 
first sj^rang into life, introduced himself to the public in its 
pages. His freshness and vigor, the vivid pictures of nature 
that shone in such beautiful colorings and true outlines from 
his every page, soon caught the attention of appreciative 
readers, and he rapidly rose in poetical fame. C. W. Stod- 
dard also established in the Overland a reputation that, prop- 
erly cherished, will grow to be lasting; and the songs of 
California's sweetest singer, Ina D. Coolbrith, that graced its 
pages, will appeal to the hearts and thrill the souls of those 


to whom the Overland was dear, in after years, when a perhaps 
more ' ' classic " magazine shall be reared upon the heap of ruins 
that alone will tell of an Overland that was, but is no more. 
Besides the names appearing in the contents of the first 
number, there were many contributors, some of whom take 
rank with the more brilliant writers of the day. J. Ross 
Browne, Gen. John W. Ames, John Muir, J. J. Piatt, Leonard 
Kip, Prentice Mulford, Phoebe Carey, Sarah B. Cooper, and 
Mrs. Victor, all are to be added to the honorable list that 
spake to the public through its pages. The Overland was the 
mirror that reflected the literary lights that rose up on this 
western horizon; and had the more brilliant stars, whose rays 
have radiated over the whole country, concentrated their 
powers upon this magazine, it would have more certainly 
tested the permanency of their brilliancy, and the jDublic 
would doubtless have upheld the Overland, because of the 
light that its pages reflected. But the field was too limited to 
some, and they have planted themselves in more capacious 
vineyards; meanwhile their first fruit has ripened and dropped 
to the ground. 


When Mr. Harte resigned the editorship of the Overland, 
as before stated, Mr. Bartlett took editorial charge, though 
devoting to the magazine only that time unoccupied by his 
editorial duties on the Bulletin. He continued in this capacity 
for nearly a year, when Mr. Carmany, the proprietor, under- 
took the full management. With two assistants, he superin- 
tended the publication for more than a year. 

Mr. Benj. P. Avery next took the position of editor, and 
though in feeble health, he ably and faithfully performed the 
duties of the ofiice, until his appointment as Minister to China. 
Under his administration the magazine showed much vigor, 
and the publisher was reassured that it was upon a permanent 
basis. But when he left he seemed to take with him its 
vitality; and although Mr. Fisher, his successor, worked man- 
fully to uphold it, the process of decline could not be stayed. 

Mr. Fisher's connection was dissolved a few months pre- 
vious to its suspension, when Mr. Carmany again took the 
editorial management, and calmly awaited the finale. 

When the probability of its suspension was first made known 
to the public, those who were most interested in the magazine 


met and consulted as to Low it might be revived and con- 
tinued, but nothing was accomplished to check its ebbing life, 
and with the December number, 1875, the Overland Monthly 
closed its brief career. 


Serene, indififerent of Fate, 
Thou sittest at the Western Gate; 

Upon thy hights so lately won, 
Still slant the banners of the sun; 

Thou seest the white seas strike their tents 
O Warder of two Continents ! 

And scornful of the peace that flies, 
Thy angry winds and sulleu skies, 

Thoxi drawest all things, small or great, 
To thee, beside the Western Gate. 


lion's whelp! that hidest fast. 

In jungle growth of spire and inast; 

1 know thy running and thy greed. 
Thy hard, high lust and willful deed, 

And all thy glory loves to tell 

Of specious gilts material. , 

Drop down, O fleecy Fog ! and hide 
Her skeptic sneer, and all her pride. 

Wrap her, O Fog ! in gown and hood 
Of her Franciscan Brotherhood; 

Hide me her faults, her sin and blame. 
With thy gray mantle cloak her shame t 

So shall she, cowled, sit and pray. 
Till moiniug bears her sins away. 

Then rise, fleecy Fog ! and raise 
The glory of her coming days. 

Be as the cloud that flecks the seas 
Above her smoky argosies. 

When forms familiar shall give place 
To stranger speech and newer face; 

When all her throes and anxious fears 
. Lie hushed in the repose of years; 

When Art shall raise and culture lift 
The sensual joys and meaner thrift, 

And all fulfilled the vision, we. 

Who watch and wait shall never see — 

Who in the morning of her race 
Toiled fair or meanly in our place; 

But, yielding to the common lot, 
Lie unrecorded and forgot. 







THE principal manufacturing industries of San Francisco 
are the foundries, which are of a character that would be 
creditable to much larger and older cities. For many j^ears 
the whole coast was almost entirely dependent on the foun- 
dries of San Francisco for necessary iron work; and even now, 
although imported machinery is more plentiful, the greater 
part of the work is performed by our own mechanics. Of 
course, under these circumstances, eveiy variety of work had 
to be turned out, from monster mining machinery to the sim- 
plest castings, and the foundries were often put to much more 
severe tests than those better equipped in older communities. 
Now, however, they have machine tools capable of doing any 
class or size of work, and doing it well ; so that they can turn 
out as good jobs as any foundries in the country. 

Of course, on this coast the principal large work is mining 
machinery; and of late years the city foundiies have built some 
more massive and magnificent than any ever before made. As 
the mines on the great Comstock lode have increased in depth, 
the difficulties of hoisting and pumping have materially in- 
creased ; and what was considered large machinery ten years 
ago, is now looked upon as insignificant. Sixty-stamp mills 
are now more frequently ordered than were ten-stamp mills a 
few years ago; and more iron is used in one pumping or hoist- 
ing outfit than was formerl}' used in half a dozen. 

There are altogether, in San Francisco, forty-seven foundries, 
machine shops, etc. Some of these are, of course, on a small 
scale. Among them are several brass foundries, the largest of 
which is Garratt's. The different shops have a capital invested 
of §2,8G9,000, and employ about 3000 men. They pay annu- 


ally for wages about $1,000,000, and produce annually in value 
$4,200,000. Of rolling mills, there is only one, with a million 
dollars invested, and giving employment to from 300 to 400 
men. These mills loroduce annually $730,000 in money value. 
They re-roll railroad iron, and furnish the usual articles from 
a rolling mill. 

Among the various drawbacks to foundry business in San 
Francisco has always been the lack of certain descriptions of 
material. Dear coal and iron have long stood in the way of 
the manufacturers, and do so still — the cost of the former rang- 
ing from $8.50 to $17 per ton, averaging $12 — the price of the 
latter running from $45 to $55 per ton. To show the great 
difference which exists in this respect between California and 
other countries, it is only necessary to state that the English 
coal, which is sold here from the yard at $12, is purchased for 
$5; that Eastern coal, costing about the same, sells here for $18 
to $20. And pig iron is worth twice as much as in England or 
Pennsylvania. Any one can see that our foundrymen have, 
from these causes alone, great disadvantages to overcome. 
The consumption of pig iron, during the year 1875, was 17,718 

Notwithstanding these obstacles, the foundries have been 
fully uj^ to the requirements. They have procured the best of 
tools, capable of doing the largest work, and the mechanics are 
proficient workmen. Mr. Irving Scott, of the Union Iron 
Works, Mr. Moore, of the Risdon, and Mr. Fogg, of the 
Pacific, have no superiors anywhere, in their knowledge of the 
details of mining machinery; and their practical experience 
and information in a general foundry business is great. These 
superintendents of the three principal Iron "Works have each 
under their charge continually, from three hundred to five 
hundred men, and have lately constructed some of the largest 
mining machinery ever made. 

The foundrymen of San Francisco labor under some peculiar 
disadvantages. Everything that is ordered, is wanted in the 
greatest hurry possible. The mining companies in particular, 
never make up their minds what they want, until they want it, 
and then it is needed immediately. Plenty of jobs have been 
undertaken and finished by our local works in a space of time 
which would look preposterous to persons in older communi- 


Another thing is that people on this coast expect more out 
of machinery than they do anywhere else. An engine is gen- 
erally made to do twice as much work as it is expected to do 
by other people, and the machinery must be made strong 
enough to stand these requirements. The Eastern-made en- 
gines do not by any means come uj) to the California standard. 

It cannot be doubted that California jDossesses many advan- 
tages in the manufacture of the magnificent in machinery. 
The inventive spirit, inspired by the thoughts of treasures but 
lightly hidden, nerves itself to cope with any requirement, no 
matter how great or difficult. Possessing the true Californian 
quality of enterprise, the manufacturing skill and power follow 
close upon the thought of the inventor, and the brightest idea 
is speedily embodied in jpractical and effective machinery. The 
result is that the industrial spirit on this coast is more alert, 
active, and progressive than in the older States. Continually 
gaining strength by past achievement, it pushes forward wdth 
new power and vigor. It shrinks from nothing; it achieves 
everything. Nowhere else in the world is there more spirit, 
enterprise, inventive and executive ability than among our 
manufacturers of machinery. 

No small part of our success in this direction is due, doubt- 
less, to the fact that our resources are so rich and so accessi- 
ble. The sj)eed with which immense values are drawn from 
our mines, leads to free investment in means to obtain them. 
The demand says: "Give us what will do the work; the reward 
is sure." In answer to such a call, our enterprising manufac- 
turers are continually imi:)roving their patterns, enlarging their 
facilities and stimulating their inventive power. The result is 
growth, progress, and improvement, which are an honor to the 
State, because they establish an indejoendeut self-reliance in 
our industries. Everything which the workers of the coast 
require, the manufacturers of the coast can supply. 


The Union Iron Works comprise probably the most extensive 
foundry and machine shops on the Pacific Coast, and in its 
appointments will comj^are favorably with any of the iron works 
in the older cities of the East. This institution is the oldest 
established of its character in California. No better indication 
of the progress of the Pacific Coast could be given, than that 


shown by the steady increase in business of a representative 
mechanical institution of this kind; and a brief history of its 
origin and growth will repay perusal by those interested in 
mechanical pursuits or the progress of San Francisco. 

The Union Iron Works were originally founded in 1849, by 
Messrs. James and Peter Donahue, and at that time consisted 
of a small rude furnace and a few common tools, not even cov- 
ered in or protected from the weather. The furnace blast was 
j)roduced by two blacksmith bellows. Soon after the works 
started, the first iron casting turned out on the Pacific coast 
was made, in the shape of a " steady or spring bearing," for 
the 2:»ropellor McKim. This casting cost fifty cents per j)ound. 
From this little " plant " the Donahue Brothers built up a very- 
large business, enlarging and improving their establishment 
from time to time, and endeavoring to keep it in advance of 
similar w^orks, which in course of time sprang up around them. 
In 1856, James Donahue sold his interest in the business to his 
brother Peter, who erected a large brick building on the site of 
the roofless workshop of 1849, and carried on the business in 
his own name. 

As Mr. Donahue, however, was engaged in other enterprises 
of great magnitude, he was unable to exercise a personal super- 
vision over the mechanical branch of his business, and in 1863, 
formed a copartnershiiD with H. J. Booth, of the Maiysville 
Foundrj'-, and C. S. Higgins, under the firm name of Donahue, 
Booth & Co. Mr. Booth had been in the foundiy business in 
California for twelve years, and Mr. Higgins was also an active 
business man; but the institution did not flourish as it should, 
and the firm sold out, in 1865, to a new firm composed of H. J. 
Booth, G. W. Prescott, and Irving M, Scott, under the firm 
name of H. J. Booth & Co. 

Under this firm, the foundry has been running for the past 
ten years. As soon as they took hold of the business, it began 
to increase -wonderfully and new machinery was purchased, 
more men employed, and the facilities increased gradually to 
the present time, until now it probably is the most completely 
equipped foundry and machine shop on the coast. 

In June, 1875, Mr. H. J. Booth retired from the business 
and the firm name was changed to Prescott, Scott & Co., the 
new firm comprising G. W. Prescott and Irving M. Scott of 
the ©Id firm, and H. T. Scott, who has for about eight years 
been connected with the firm as confidential agent. 


The buildings comprising the works are not of elegant ex- 
terior, although the interior aiTaugements are Avell adapted for 
the purposes for which the}' are used. The offices are fitted 
up in neat style, with counting room, business room, private 
offices, etc. A new and commodious boiler shoj) has recently 
been erected. The institution is connected with the American 
District telegraph system of this city, and has speaking tubes, 
etc., throughout the buildings. Each mechanical branch of the 
business of these works comprises a distinct department, under 
the special charge of a foreman of experience. The workmen 
rely on merit alone for promotion, and discipline is maintained 
with a firm hand, the rules being thoroughly understood. 

In a large establishment like this, employing sometimes 500 
men, some system is of course needed, to keep a check on the 
men and look out for those who shirk duty or endeavor to get 
full " time " with very little work. In these works, the idlers 
and loafers, are closely looked after and weeded out as soon as 
possible. Each man has a metal check with his number on it, 
which on his arrival in the morning he hangs on a i^eg having 
a corresponding number. This is under the supervision of one 
of the " police department." It is, of course, easy to see who 
is there and who not. At regular intervals during the day 
men go around the works and see that all the hands ai-e fully 
emjDloyed, and it is the duty of each foreman, to see that his 
men do not " soldier." "When the men come in at one o'clock, 
each takes his number from the pegs, so it is again known 
whether all the force returns at the proper time. 

The firm receives boys at the age of seventeen, for four 
years, paying them the first year $4 per week; the second year, 
$6 per week; the third year, $8 per week; and the fourth, $10 
jjer week. At the expiration of the time, a pretty correct esti- 
mate of their worth can be formed, and if they have proved 
themselves good workmen, they are kept employed in the es- 
tablishment, and experience has shown that they generally 
accomplish more work than Eastern men. The firm under- 
takes to give the boys a trade, and they bind themselves to 
remain four years. If they leave the establishment without 
permission during that time, they forfeit all pay due them 
when they leave, and the proprietors reserve to themselves the 
right to discharge any boy for incompetency or want of punc- 
tuality. The boys usually prove themselves attentive and in- 


dustrious, for no sbop will employ an apprentice from another 
shop unless he brings a written discharge. This established 
rule prevents boys from roaming about from one shop to an- 
other. The reward for ability and good behavior is promotion 
in work and tools. Under this system of mutual good will, 
the employers are protected and the employees saved from the 
unpleasantness of being bound to unappreciated servitude. 
The good boy is promoted; the bad boy discharged. The for- 
mer, in fact, does not require to be bound, and the latter is 
not wanted on any terms whatever. The advantage to the boy 
is he learns a respectable trade and obtains the means of earn- 
ing a good hving, while the advantage to the community is 
that every boy who labors faithfully in the establishment has 
inducements to become a respected citizen; for while it is the 
aim of the jjroprietors to make a first-class mechanic, they also 
seek to train an intelligent and peaceful member of the com- 

The "California," which was the first regular locomotive 
ever constructed on this coast, was made at these works, and 
was pronounced by competent judges to be satisfactory in 
every respect. This was some years ago, and since then they 
have turned out seventeen locomotives altogether. 

The Union Iron Works employ a small army of men in the 
different departments. Altogether, there are 476 men em- 
ployed in the establishment, as follows: Pattern makers, 18; 
machinists, 143; blacksmiths, 40; boilermakers, 72; laborers, 
63; moulders, 127; draughtsmen, 4; draymen, 7; and watch- 
men, 2. 

Two engines of a total capacity of 120-horse power drive 
the machinery of the works. The consumption of pig-iron 
per year i§ about 4,500 tons. They use 1,000 tons of Lehigh 
coal for smelting and other jDurposes, 1,200 tons of fuel coal 
and 400 tons of Cumberland coal for smith purposes. They 
also use 5,000 tons of wrought iron; 300 tons of boiler plate, 
and about 8,000 tubes for a year's supply. The amount of 
money distiibuted by this institution for wages alone, will 
average $250,000 per year. 


The Risdon Iron Works is one of the three largest foundries 
of the city, employing from 250 to 350 men, according to 


requirements. The works cover a space about 300 x 300 feet. 
They have all the necessary appliances for turning out any 
style or size of machinery, but make a specialty of mining 
and marine work. The}-- are able to take a contract for build- 
ing steamers, etc., and turn them out ready for sea. Among 
some of the work of this character may be mentioned the 
revenue cutter Oliver Wolcoit, the Newport, Areata, etc., with 
surface condensing engines; and the Los Angeles and Ventura, 
which were fitted with compound engines. 

Of hydraulic machinery also a sj)ecialty is made, for pump- 
ing, hoisting, etc. The hoists in the Palace Hotel were made 
on this principle by these works, and are fine examples of 
hydraulic engineering. Mr. Moore, the superintendent of the 
Risdon, is owner of the patent for this coast of the direct act- 
ing engines with the Davy differential valve-gear, now so 
largely in use. All of the large engines lately built for the 
Comstock mines are made on this principle. 

The largest machinery in the mining line made at these 
works is that of the Belcher pumping works. They are capa- 
ble of pumping 750 gallons per minute, from a depth of 3,000 
feet. When it was found that the old pumping machinery 
■would not drain the shaft, it was proposed that the new air 
shaft, completed to the 1000-foot level should be made a drain 
shaft as well. The mine was already drained to the depth of 
the 1600-foot level, so very powerful pumps were required, as 
at that point the shaft when sunk further must drain not only 
the Belcher but the Crown Point mine, adjacent. 

The engine is known as the Imperial beam compound 
direct-acting pumping engine, and has an initial cylinder 
30 inches in diameter, and a 10-foot six-inch stroke. The 
expansion cylinder is G2 inches in diameter, and the piston 
an eight-foot stroke. The expansion is set on a solid 
sole -plate, secured to the foundations immediately over 
the rear end of the pumping beam. This beam is of cast- 
iron trussed with wrought -iron. It is 32 feet and 6 inches 
in length and 11 feet deep, between centers. The main center 
is 20 inches in diameter in the middle, and 16 inches in the 
journal. The j)iston connects direct with the beam by a 
10-inch pin, avoiding all superfluous and extra gearing. The 
connecting pin with the pump-rod is 11 inches in diameter, 
and the engine is controlled by the Davy differential valve-gear. 


The condenser and air-pump are entirely segregated from the 
pumping engine, work independent, and are also controlled by 
the Davy gear. 

The boilers are six in number, each 54 inches in diameter, 
16 feet in length, and of the tubular make. The stone foun- 
dations upon which the whole is placed are built in pits blasted 
from the bed-rock, and will contain over 2,000 perch of solid 
stone. The plunger pumj^s will be placed at distances of 200 
feet apart in the shaft. A single line of 14-inch pumps will 
extend from the surface to the bottom of the shaft, capable of 
throwing, with the engine running at a rate of 10 strokes per 
minute, 30,000 gallons of water per hour. 


The Pacific Iron Works is the oldest but one of the iron 
foundries on this coast. It was established in 1850, by Mr. 
Ooddard, occupying the same location as at present, on First 
Street, between Mission and Howard. The works occupy a 
space fronting 240 feet on First Street, and running back to 
Fremont Street 275 feet. The proprietors, for the past four- 
teen years, have been Ira P. Kankin and A. P. Brayton. The 
general superintendent is George W. Fogg. 

The works have lately been completely refitted, with new 
tools of the most approved character, capable of turning out 
all classes of work, and now comprise one of the largest and 
best equipped shops on the coast. The shop itself is a very 
substantial three-story brick building, but there are numerous 
additional buildings to accommodate the difi'erent departments. 
On an average, about 800 men are constantly emj)loyed. In 
addition to mining machinery, this foundry makes a specialty 
of marine work, of which it has turned out a great deal. 
The works are peculiarly fitted for building heavy mining ma- 
chinery. As evidence of what can be done in this line, the 
following brief description of the Savage mining machinery, 
furnished by the Pacific Iron Works in May, 1875, will be in- 
teresting : 

This pumping machinery is among the most complete and 
extensive ever made on this coast, and in the matter of design 
and workmanship is alike creditable to the skill of our mechan- 
ics and the capacity of our iron works. The engine is what is 
known as a direct-acting, compound non-condensing engine, 


and is from an original design by Mr. William H. Patton, con- 
sulting engineer of the Savage mine. It is a very massive af- 
fair, being about 40 feet in length, and weighing upwai'ds of 
100 tons. The engine connects directly with the pump bob at 
the head of the shaft, without the usual intervening crank and 
gearing. The valves are connected with the Davy differential 
valve gear, which is operated by an independent engine, by 
which the strokes of the pump can be varied without any refer- 
ence to the motion of the main engine. 

The engine consists of two horizontal cylinders. The first 
or initial cylinder is 27 inches in diameter and 8 feet stroke. 
The second is the expansion cylinder, and is 48 inches diame- 
ter and 8 feet stroke. These two cylinders are placed in line 
and connected by one piston rod, by which the pistons of both 
cylinders are operated. Attached to the oj^posite end of the 
large cylinder is the bed plate, with slides and cross-head, to 
which is attached the connecting rod, which connects directlj 
with the pump bob. The steam enters the first cylinder at an 
average pressui-e of 90 pounds per square inch, and exhausts 
into the large cylinder, where it exjDands down to a pressure 
of not more than five or six pounds, thus utilizing the whole 
expansive power of the steam, and this, we may remark, is the 
secret of the great economy of the compound engine. 

The engine is so arranged as to permit the attachment of a 
condenser, when it shall become necessary to increase its 
power, as the shaft increases in depth. The machinery will 
now have a lift of about 2,500 feet, but it is capable of raising 
a column of at least 4,000 feet in dejpth, with a cajjacity of 
30,000 gallons per hour. 

The pumps are stationed every 250 feet in the shaft, each 
pump being supplied from a tank filled from the pump below. 
The sinking pump, which is to follow the workings of the 
shaft, is 20 feet stroke and four inch metal, weighing some 12 
tons, being strong enough to stand the heaviest blast. 

The pump rod is made of 14-inch square timber, heavily 
braced vnth iron straps, and extends to the bottom of the shaft. 
The enormous weight of this rod is counterbalanced with bal- 
ance bobs, stationed every 500 feet in its length. 

The engine, with line of pumps, bobs, etc., weighs some- 
thing over 500 tons, and will cost the mine, when put in place, 
about $400,000. The foundations for this machinery are of the 


heaviest and most substantial character, being made of cut 
stone Tipwards of 30 feet in depth. 

We have given enough in this chapter, to show what San 
Francisco can do in the way of iron working, and omit details 
of any other than the three principal foundries mentioned. 
These establishments, have been carried on to their present 
positions in a country that does not produce a pound of i^ig 
iron, no hard-wood timber, not a pound of coal, except for fuel 
purposes, and where wages are at least thirty three per cent. 
Jiigher than in the Eastern States. 







AN old story has been told, perhaps the thousandth time, 
of a newly married pair of New Yorkers who, im- 
mediately after their union had been consummated, journeyed 
"westward, intending to fight the battles of wedded life in San 
Francisco. They traveled by steamer, and had just disem- 
barked at the port of San Francisco, when the earthquake of 
1865 came, and so seriously threatened a general demolition. 
This w^as too abrupt an introduction to the severities of Cali- 
fornia life for the loving couple, and they immediately hied 
hence, taking the next steamer that sailed for New York, no 
doubt expecting to learn of the total destruction of San Fran- 
cisco upon their arrival home. 

One, two, and nearly three years passed, however, and the 
proud ''city at the Golden Gate" rested firmly on her founda- 
tions, and daily grew more attractive to an admiring world, 
offering greater advantages to enterprising youth than in her 
golden days. * 

Again the young adventurers are on their journey, and 
again have set foot upon San Francisco's sandy shores, de- 
termined this time to boldly meet any terrible aspect that 
nature may put on. A day had passed, and a night, and all 
was well; but with the rising sun Nature again became dis- 
turbed; the pent-up elements sought liberty, and in the strug- 
gle shook the earth to its very foundations; the earthquake of 
1868, with all its terrors, had passed. While there wei'e yet 
frequent tremblings, the last dying throes of the giant's power, 
a ship passed out through the "Golden Gate," and among 
its passengers, bound for New York, were the unfortunate 
adventurers, having grown weary of a life in a country so 


near to the great heart of nature as to sometimes feel its 
throbbings. Since then they have been content in their 
Eastern home, and their California experience is only a pleas- 
ant recollection, vivid in aspect, but a topic of interest to 
themselves and friends. 

To those in the East, and all persons who live without the 
limits of earthquake disturbances, the thought of the ground 
itself being unstable and liable at any moment to be con- 
vulsed by some mighty hidden power, inspires more real 
terror than the ordinary shocks that are frequently felt in 
California. Visitors to this coast feel much solicitude on 
account of the "shaky" condition of the country, until they 
Lave been made acquainted with the jphenomenon, by feehng- 
a few smart shakes. Familiarity with danger subdues fear 
and dread; and a year's residence in San Francisco will quiet 
any fearful apprehensions from earthquakes. 

"While it would not be very strange if a shock should visit 
San Francisco, so powerful as to lay much of the city in ruins, 
and consequently be very destructive to life, yet it is not prob- 
able that such an event will transpire. And, even if it should, 
the disastrous result would not be greater than attends the 
scourges from epidemic diseases that so often prevail in East- 
ern cities, from which San Francisco is almost wholly exempt. 
"Every place has its drawbacks," said the old farmer after a 
day's havoc among the Canada thistles that had overrun his 
farm; " Jones, whose quarter-section jiues mine on the right, 
has to fight fox-tail, and Brown, jist below my paster there, 
has chinch-bugs in his corn, and his small grain is all a-rustin' 
— so we has to put up with our little dif;/ic^-ulties. " Califor- 
nia has its earthquakes; the Western States their swarms of 
grasshoppers and devastating whirlwinds; the South, its mala- 
rial diseases; the North, its frigid clime; the East, a poor and 
worn-out soil; and all of the States east of the Kocky Mount- 
ains, the terrific lightning storms that are more destructive by 
far than any of the earthquakes that have ever visited Cali- 


October 8, 1865, and October 21, 1868, are dates that Cali- 
fornians will not soon forget. They are indelibly impressed 
upon the minds of every person who witnessed the events that 
transpired on those days. 


October 8, 1865, came on Sunday. It was a bright Sabbath 
morning — such a day as invites everybody out doors to enjoy 
the sunshine find invigorating air, and obsei-ve the day by 
resting from labor. Many of the i:)eople betook themselves to 
the streets for a stroll; some were passing the day at the Sun- 
day amusement jDlaces, and all the churches in the city were 
thronged at the noon-day services. All were pursuing the 
bent of their desires, when, between twelve o'clock and one 
in the afternoon, a slight shock of earthquake was felt. This 
was light, of short duration, and was remarked, but caused no 
alarm. Following it in a few seconds, a second shock came — 
not a simple jar or tremulous motion, but a rapid shake, pow- 
erful and convulsive, like the crash of a terrific concussion; 
increasing in intensity, as though it were but a warning of a 
more powerful disturbance yet to follow. This was accompa- 
nied by a frightful roaring sound, like the rushing of mighty 
waters, the rumbling of distant thunder, or the rattle of a 
heavy wagon on the pave, driven at rapid speed. This shock 
continued for the space of ten seconds — like so many hours to 
those who experienced its greatest severity. The walls of 
buildings swayed to and fro, or parting in places, closed and 
opened again — chattering in mad fury because of being dis- 
turbed in their quiet rest. Cornices and firewalls came tumb- 
ling to the sidewalk; chimney-tops went crashing through the 
roofs and ceilings; window-glass snapj)ed and cracked, then 
jingled on the pavement, and joists and rafters squeaked and 
groaned under the terrible wrenching. Whole walls crumbled 
and fell; furniture toppled and rocked, and the dropping of 
j)laster and clatter of crockery added to the fearful racket. 
Horses pricked up their ears, snorted, and dashed away at full 
speed, as if to flee the danger, or stood trembling in their 
tracks looking imploringly about them; dogs skulked to their 
kennels growling, or crouched to the ground whining and 
howling from fright; fowls flew to the trees uttering notes 
of alarm, and even the birds were bewildered, and fluttered 
aimlessly through the air. 

The people were panic stricken. Those who were in doors 
rushed to the street, and those without, stood amazed, anx- 
iously awaiting their doom, or stupidly gazing upon the scene 
of confusion. In the churches, there was the utmost constei'na- 
tion. Women shrieked, children screamed, men groaned, then 


for a moment all were paralyzed with awe — and then all with 
sudden impulse rushed for the door; they pressed and crowded 
forward, trampling some under foot, the strong pushing aside 
the weak, all clambering for egress, wild with fright, not know- 
ing what they did. Some leaped from the galleries into the 
crowd below, and so dense was the throng that there were 
some who climbed out over the heads and shoulders of the 
human mass. All was excitement and alarm — yet, strange to 
say, amid all the threatened dangers, with the attending con- 
sternation, there "was not a single life lost, and no one seri- 
ously injured. 

In the low grounds of the city, and at those parts where the 
ground had been reclaimed from the water of the bay by filling 
in, the devastation Avas greatest. Water- jjipes were broken, 
the ground elevated or depressed in places, and cracked ojDen 
for a considerable distance. In one place, the sewer was warped 
and twisted and lifted entirely above the surface. Lamp-posts 
■were bent from a peri^endicular to an inclined position, and 
everything had more or less suffered some displacement. 

On Long Bridge — extending across a slough of the bay — the 
shock was exceedingly severe. Men who were crossing at the 
time remarked a peculiar bubbling and boiling of the water, as 
if some terrible commotion was going on beneath, and the oscil- 
lation of the earth was so great that they could not retain a 
■standing position, but fell prone upon their faces. Some were 
discovered, immediately after the shock, lying insensible, the 
fright and shock to their nervous system having temporarily 
paralyzed them. 

On the bay and ocean previous to the earthquake it had been 
unusually calm, and the water was smooth and motionless as a 
sheet of glass. But succeeding the shock a sharp wind came 
up, the waters became agitated, and soon huge billows were 
rolling in. The sensation upon shipboard was as if the vessel 
had struck a rock or bar, and was for the few moments appar- 
ently laboring as if uncertain whether it would pass over or 
settle upon the obstruction. The engines of steamers were 
stopped, the officers laboring under this delusion. 

The 21st of October, 1868, came on "Wednesday, and the 
earthquake on that day occurred a few minutes before 8 o'clock 
in the morning. It was heralded by no trembling motion, 


but came in sudden fury like the spring of a tiger upon its in- 
tended victim. It was of much greater duration, continuing 
forty-two seconds, and was even more vigorous than the shock 
of '65. Many persons were yet ia bed; some had just risea 
and were partly dressed, while a few had gone out upon the 
streets or to their business places. 

The excitement was intense. Almost every one rushed for 
the streets in headlong haste. All kinds of dress was repre- 
sented from the costume of our first parents to the complete 
toilette of the day. Modesty was overcome by fright. Mothers 
could be seen in their night garments wringing their hands 
and weej)ing, while the little bright-eyed babies at their breasts 
cooed and clapped their tiny hands in an ecstasy of joy. 
Strong men, whose hearts would not fail them in times of com- 
mon danger, grew ashy pale and quaked with fear, for there 
was a power manifesting itself with which it were useless to 
contend. O, that was a sad day for the inhabitants of San 
Francisco! There were more fervent prayers offered, and 
more secret resolves to lead better lives if spared from the im- 
pending danger, in that one day, than have been in all the 
years that have since rolled past. They were earnest, too, 
those supplications and resolves. There was not one, perhajDS, 
in that city of one hundred and fifty thousand souls, but felt 
for the moment, that they had finished their work and would 
now be hurled into eternity. At such times, the heart gives 
echo to the words the mouth utters, or sanctions the mute ap- 
peals that go up from the depths of the soul. 

The destruction of property Avas greater than by the earth- 
quake three years preceding, and the casualities to persons 
were considerable. Five or six were killed outright by falling 
walls or cornices, and the number of wounded was between 
forty-five and fifty. The estimated damage to property was 
about four hundred thousand dollars. A half dozen brick 
buildings were thrown down, a number of others were injured 
beyond repair, while scarce a heavy structure in the city es- 
caped damage. To this day, leaning walls, gaping cracks and 
displaced bricks or timbers remain to tell the tale of devasta- 


Although during a severe earthquake, there are few that are 
not seized with alarm and do not become wild with excitement, 
an occasional person is found however, that remains calm and 


retains self-control. During- the shock of 1868, a minister -wlao 
was just closing his sermon, was heard repeating in a clear 
calm voice, " Though I walk through the valley of the shadow 
of death, yet will I fear no evil " — while his congregation were 
in the utmost confusion, shrieking from fright and clambering 
to get out of the church. 

It was quite the reverse with the Irish servant girl, during 
the same excitement. Her mistress told her to go up-stairs 
and get the baby, whereupon she hurried away at the top of 
her speed and in a moment was discovered rapidly descending 
with a trunk on her back and a bible in her hand — having en- 
tirely forgotten the object of her mission. 

After any considerable " shake" in San Francisco, the theo- 
rists come out in full force through the newspapers, each, no 
doubt, assured that he has solved the earthquake problem. 
One theory, as to the cause of earthquakes, attributes the phe- 
nomenon to electricity; in proof of which, instances that oc- 
curred in the city have been cited. " A lady discovered that 
she was supercharged with electricity, by the crackling of her 
hair, when touched by the hand of another person. The flow- 
ing of the electric spark was wonderfully profuse, it going off 
in a constant stream of brilliant light. This was first obser\^ed 
twelve hours preceding the earthquake shock, and ceased im- 
mediately after it had passed." 

A man's arm was j^aralyzed by the shock, and he distinctly 
felt the magnetic current passing out at his fingers' ends. 

A peculiar result from the earthquake was noticed in the 
sign on a bank and insurance building on Montgomery street. 
The letters composing the sign were "block letters" covered 
with gilt, and each separate from the others. Before the 
shock, the sign read something like this: "The Globe Life 
& Fire Insurance Company, of London and San Francisco 
— limited," and the number of the building, "412." The 
letters were large and spread over a great part of the front 
of the building. After the earthquake, they were twisted into 
such confusion as to render it impossible to learn from the 
sign what idea they were intended to convey. There were 
distinguishable the words "Globe," "limited," "San Fran- 
cisco," "412," "Fire," "&," "London," "and," "Life," 
"Company;" but no connection whatever was apparent. It 
was proposed that they be left in that position, and an addi- 


tional sign, "Earthquake Curiosities/' be placed beneath 


So far as is known, California has always been "shaky on. 
her pins." The Spanish records make mention of earth- 
quakes in the latter part of the last century, and an account 
of a very severe earthquake shock that occurred in 1812, is 
among the Spanish archives. This shook down the tower of 
the old Spanish Mission, San Juan Capistrano, in Los Angeles 
County, burying a number of the natives in the ruins. Al- 
ways, for a few days succeeding any severe shock, there are 
numerous slight tremblings at intervals of a few hours. 
These would scarcely be noticed, were it not that the inhab- 
itants have not yet recovered from the fright the heavy shock 

Observation shows that the greatest number of shocks occur 
in January, while February and March are almost exempt 
from any disturbance whatever. In the summer months, there 
are more, and they gradually increase ^n frequency, through 
the fall months, np to January again. 

The average number of shocks per year, in San Francisco, is 
probably fifteen. Some are scarcely perceptible, while others 
are sufficiently vigorous to remind one of the old Jesuit 
prophecy that foretold the sinking of the whole peninsula, 
and engulfing a large city beneath the waves of the ocean. 

woodwaed's gardens. 325 






"YTT'OODWAIID'S Gardens combine an array of attrac- 
VV tions that have given them a national renown. Any 
one, wherever he may be, in search of information regarding 
San Francisco, is almost sure to find some allusion to, if not 
an extended description of, these beautiful grounds, and the 
many interesting features they contain. Visitors to San Fran- 
cisco seldom fail to include in their rambles about the city, 
this beautiful resort. It is without a rival on the Pacific Coast, 
and for diversity oFrattractions is not inferior to some of the 
celebrated parks in cities whose age in decades outnumber Sau 
Francisco's years. 

The climate has had much to do with the rapid improvement 
of this spot — being favorable to the jjropagation of trees, plants, 
and shrubs, of choice and beautiful varieties, as well as to the 
sustenance of rare and delicate specimens of the animal king- 
dom — the collection of which is one of the chief attractions of 
the gardens. 

It is a spot of perennial beauty. The blight of frost or the 
sear leaf of summer is not seen ; but month after month, 
through the recurring seasons, the verdure of spring and the 
bloom of June abounds, to cheer and delight those who may 
ramble among its fragrant bowers. There are sj)arkling foun- 
tains, dashing cascades, murmuring brooks, glassy lakes, and 
trickling rivulets; there are mounds and hillocks, grottoes and 
caverns, lawns and thickets. The broad, natural landscaj)e, 
with its varied beauties of woodland and prairie, its rolling 
hills and craggy mountains, its lazy streams and rushing tor- 
rents, has been here reproduced in mimic truthfulness. Adown 


the slanting lawn the silver-footed gazelle nimbly bounds, while 
on the sandy slope the stalwart ostrich dreams of desert suns, 
unconscious of your gaze ! 


This department embraces a miscellaneous collection of the 
wonders of art and nature. The building devoted to the mu- 
seum was formerly occupied by Mr. Woodward as a private 
residence. The nucleus of the collection of natural history 
was imported from Verreux's Paris establishmeut, in 1866, 
since which time additions have continually been made. 

Beasts, birds, fish, fossils, antique relics, jjeculiar animal 
deformities, in great variety, confront the visitor at every turn, 
afi'ording the student amjDle opportunity^ to increase his knowl- 
edge, and at the same time, interesting and instructing to a 
degree, the most superficial observer. The cases containing 
specimens of ornithology, are brilliant with gay plumage, hav- 
ing been arranged with reference to beauty in efi'ect as well as 
to class. 

The collection of mineral and geological specimens is exten- 
sive and very valuable. Gleanings from the mining districts 
of the coast, curious formations of crystals, volcanic debris, 
petrified animals, serpents, fish and wood, j)recious stones, 
showing every shade of color, and every degree of brilliancy, 
are arranged in artistic style in the cabinets. 

There is a collection of Japan minerals, said to be the first 
and most complete that has ever been taken from Japanese 
territory. It embraces a great variety of rich specimens, gath- 
ered on the difierent Japanese Islands, by Professor Jacques 
Kaderly, late of the Imperial Academy of Yeddo. 


Standing upon a considerable elevation is the grand pavilion, 
which is at once a play-house, a dance-hall, and a skating- 
rink. It is a large structure, octagon-shaped, and has a 
seating capacity for more than five thousand persons, and by 
utilizing the spacious aisles, perhaps as many more could be 
accommodated. The seats extend entirely around in receding 
and ascending tiers, the floor for dancing, skating, or theatri- 
cal performances, being in the center below. The floor is 

"woodward's gardens. 327 

solidly laid and smoothly polished, rivaling a sheet of ice for 
skating sports. 

Every Saturday and Sunday, and sometimes more frequently, 
visitors may witness a variety of pleasing performances in this 
arena. Sometimes feats of gymnastic skill, acrobatic per- 
formances and skating; at others, dancing and burlesque plays. 
The gardens are designed for recreation, and anything is intro- 
duced that will provoke mirth, and make man in a good hu- 
mor with the world and himself. 

In connection with the pavilion, are refreshment rooms, 
where one may be served with any delicacy the appetite craves. 
There is also an observatory which affords a magnificent out- 
look over the city, bay, and surrounding country. And, too, 
from this point a perfect view of the gardens is had, showing 
the plan of arrangement — restoring to beautiful harmony that 
which was naught but confusion when following along its mazy 


An underground passage-way connects the gardens proper 
mth the zoological department. In this enclosure are kept a 
great variety of animals. Here the lion has literally "laid 
down with the lamb " — in his paws for a breakfast, — but the 
tiger frets at his confinement, and the leopard paces to and fro 
"behind his i^rison bars, with a fierceness in his eyes that calls 
for blood. Man, in his Darwinian stage of early development 
— just at that period when the irregular pulse of reason is 
lulled into a faint flutter by the strong throbs of instinct — 
scampers about his cage indulging in most ungentlemanly 
pranks, to the infinite delight of juvenile sjoectators, or retu'es 
in high dudgeon at any personal affront from his more favored 
and enlightened progeny. 

Tigers, grizzly bears, kangaroos. South American jaguars, 
panthers, camels, buffaloes, sacred cows, all, with many varie- 
ties of animals of less note, are among the inhabitants of this 

In the center of this enclosure is a large race-course, afford- 
ing opportunity for all kind of equestrian sports. Roman 
chariot races, hurdle and foot races, are here indulged in. 
Seats are arranged around this amphitheater for the comfort 
of those watching the performances. 



The aquarium is, perhaps, more attractive than any other 
especial feature in these gardens. The public is not familiar 
with the inhabitants of " the great deej)," and there is a curi- 
ous interest in studying their manoeuvres and habits, when that 
privilege is had in any convenient arrangement like that offered 
at Woodward's gardens. 

The cases containing the finny species have glass sides, and 
are placed in an artificial grotto so arranged, that sufficient 
light may fall upon each, to reveal the movements of the in- 
mates. Inside the tanks are placed coral, granite, petrified 
wood, and porous rock, to represent as nearly as possible the 
surface of the ground at the bottom of the sea, affording also 
retreats and hiding j)]aces for the fish within. Most of the fish 
seen here are taken from salt water, and the tanks of necessity 
are supplied with water from the ocean. This is obtained from 
the Pacific, by outgoing steamers, carrying with them empty 
casks, which are filled on the return trip. 

There are a great variety of species and kinds, some of which 
are seldom seen in their native waters. Among the most rare 
is the actiniae or sea-anemone, which bears a greater resem- 
blance to a plant growth than to animate life. The star-fish 
is another curious specimen, being a perfect five-pointed star. 
The cave for the aquarium has a ceiling of artificial stalactites, 
in imitation of the natural formation. 

Adjoining the tanks of the aquarium, is a fish hatching ma- 
chine. The process is wonderfully interesting, and works per- 
fectly. Different species of fish spawn at different seasons, 
and, therefore, the supply of eggs is constant, keeping the 
hatching machine in operation all the time. 

The study of this class of animal life is new, hence there are 
many difficulties in the way of maintaining an aquarium, that 
a thorough knowledge of this department of natural history 
would remove . 


The seal ponds wherein are kept a number of different spe- 
cies of seals are full of interest to those who have not been 
permitted to study these animals in their native haunts. The 
ponds are broad and deep, and rising from the centre to the 
height of several feet above the surface of the water, are mon- 
ster craggy rocks, furnishing a resting place for the seals, where 

woodward's gardens. 329 

they lie stretched out in awkward pose the greater part of the 

A monster sea lion rules as king of this colony. He is terri- 
ble in his wrath when disturbed by his lesser kinsmen, and 
roars and barks in deafening tones if his mandates are disre- 

It is startling to behold with what recklessness these curious 
creatures leap from crag to point, or plunge headlong into the 
water below. They will scramble over each other, utter angry 
howls at the least offense, and quarrel and dispute about favor- 
ite sunny spots on the rocks, with as much spirit as did the 
early San Francisco settlers, over "squatter" rights. 

At feeding time there is a great commotion in this com- 
munity. As the food is tossed into the water, a terrible scuffle 
ensues, and the one that secures the morsel has no time to lose 
in dejDositing it where his appetite dictates, as he is chased 
over rocks, through the water, now cut o£f from this retreat by 
a flank movement, now surrounded, and only escapes by a sud- 
den dive beneath his enemies — continually harassed until the 
coveted piece has disappeared. 


The attractions at this popular resort are endless in variety. 
The visitor, no matter how refined or eccentric his tastes, is 
sure to find many things that will please and instruct. Such 
was the object of the beneficent proprietor, to provide a place 
of easy and quick access suited to the tastes of the greatest 
number, where they could retire from the every-day cares of 
life and enjoy a spell of happy relaxation. 

Besides what has already been mentioned, there is a bear- 
pit, wherein bruin has every appliance for displaying his 
diverse acquirements. He may scale a lofty mast, perch upon 
pedestals, show his agility at climbing dizzy ladders, or as- 
sume the gait and pose of man, as his fancy suggests. Aquatic 
fowls also glide noiselessly over the water of the lakes, or 
startle timid ladies by their harsh cackling in the willows. 

There is a deer park containing numerous captives from the 
woods and mountains; a hennery, stocked with queer speci- 
mens of poulti-y, and an aviaiy, wherein the lively variations 
of the mocking-bird blend into sublime harmony with the 
linnet's sweeter notes. 


There are conservatories fragrant with tlie perfumes and 
gorgeous -witli the bloom of flowers from every clime. An art 
gallery, containing many beautiful paintings, some of which 
are from the pencils of old masters, and exquisitely carved 
statuary, add to the attractions. 

For those fond of sport, there are boats, swings, trapeze 
bars, and rings, any of which are free to all who enter the 
grounds. There are mosques, pagodas, and rustic seats, 
placed in the most romantic places, and over the whole float 
strains of charming music, discoursed by an out-door orchestra. 

Mr. Woodward has proved himself a great benefactor to San 
Francisco's pojDulation, by providing so many interesting and 
instructive attractions, and the strongest evidence that his 
motives are beneficent is furnished in the small price that he 
charges for admission to his gardens. Twenty-five cents 
admits one to the full benefits, and many times when the 
inmates of charitable institutions desire a day for recreation 
the gates are thrown open free. 


Although Mr. Andrews is but thirty-four years old, the 
history of his California career furnishes a good illustration of 
what a man can do if he works with determined perseverance. 

Fifteen years ago, he was a newsboy in the streets of San 
Francisco. From this occupation he drifted into a position in 
the Alia California's office, and four years later became man- 
ager of the Pacific Hygiean Home, where he remained three 
years, and in the meantime edited and jDublished the Pacific 
Hygienid. He also edited and published the Temperance Mir- 
ror and the Pacific Skate Roll. 

From this time until his connection with Woodward's 
gardens, nearly eight years ago, he had further newspaper 
experience, being connected in different capacities with several 

His peculiar fitness for the position he now occupies is 
shown by the great popularity the gardens enjoy under his 
management. The amusements at the gardens are his spe- 
cialty, and he seldom brings out a performance that is not 
deservedly jDopular and particularly appropriate to the occa- 
sion. Many of the performances that have been notorious for 
their queer comicalities had their origin in his fertile brain. 

woodward's gardens. 331 

He is full of resource, and is never at a loss for a novel pro- 

He is a small, unassuming person, but possesses an inordi- 
nate fund of "bluff," wlien tackled by advertising solicitors, 
who, by the way, are among the chief annoyances at all public 
places in the city. These gardens are perhaps better adver- 
tised than any resort of equal importance in the world. 







AT the corner of Montgomery and Pine Streets may be 
seen one of the richest specimens that any of the 
mines on the Pacific Coast has ever yielded. It is not a cmde 
mass of gold, like that formed by filtering through the crevice 
of a volcanic crucible; it has not the rich purple coloring of 
the vein of native silver; neither has it the glint of sparkling 
sulphurets. It bears no resemblance to the beautiful crystal- 
line quartz so rich with golden settings, nor to the rusty lumps 
of half decomposed "croppings." It is neither nugget, in- 
got, "white rock," "blue quartz," nor "greystone." 

This specimen is not wonderful so much for its appearance, 
as for its great value. Such rare treasure is seldom developed 
by the stroke of the pick, or the force of the blast. Indeed, 
the specimen to which we allude, might be called a mine itself. 

In it there appears a "main shaft," "cross-cuts," "stopes," 
"upper" and "lower levels," "drifts," and what is yet more 
necessary to constitute a mine — but is so often lacking — the 
rich and glittering mineral dej)osits in the "main lead," with 
its "shoots," "spurs," and "pockets." 

It may be a more startling announcement still, when in 
proof of the simile it is stated that machinery, with every 
modern appliance for the rapid development of its resources, 
is in iDosition and in constant operation. There are "elevating 
cages," "stamps," and "trucks;" and withal a full force of 
workmen. Were it not that California has educated the world 
to accept the most extravagant tales of her products and re- 
sources as true, the existence of such wonderful mineral wealth 
in the sand dunes of Yerba Buena, might well be questioned. 
This, certainly would seem the most remarkable part of this 
strange specimen, and naturally suggests a question. 



That is easily answered. It is not — in the position it now 
occupies — a natural geological formation. Although our mod- 
ern geologists are apt at accounting for deformities in nature 
— and by the employment of an abundance of technical terms, 
might readily convince the public that this aurif -argentiferous 
mass was simply the result of a variety of indefinite internal 
•disturbances, caused by the sudden expansion of powerful sub- 
terranean gases, which would naturally displace the crusta- 
-ceous strata, and allow the substrata to protrude — there is no 
occasion in this instance for them to vex their minds. It is 
not native, but was transported and also transformed. It is 
the product of a sister State torn from the bowels of Mt. 
Davidson. It is only a bonanza development — the Nevada 
Bank — cash capital, five millions, gold coin; with regular de- 
posits, amounting to half as much more. 


The building occupied by the Nevada Bank, and called the 
Nevada Block, is one of the finest examples of architecture in 
the city. It is four stories high, with a lofty basement be- 
neath, and is very symmetrical. It is a monument of strength 
and beauty. The finish, both external and internal, is modest 
but artistic. All the rooms are exceedingly spacious, and that 
occupied by the bank is the largest used for such purpose in 
the city, being fifty-six by eighty feet in dimensions. The 
facing of the vaults is of exquisite design, and very elegant. 
The locks on the vaults alone, cost forty thousand dollars. 
The cost of the whole structure was five hundred thousand 
dollars. The building was erected by the proprietors of the 
bank. It was opened for occupancy on October 4, 1875, at 
"which time the bank began business. 


It is very possible that the Bank of Nevada has the largest 
surplus or reserve fund of any similar institution in the world. 
Certain it is, that no other banking establishment has its sur- 
plus capital in a more secure shape — beyond the reach of the 
most ingenious and skilled burglar. It is not secured by a 
complication of steel plates, bolts and bars, constructed by 
man, but is locked up between walls of impenetrable granite. 


hundreds of feet below the surface of the ground. It is hid 
in the fastnesses of the mountains. It is of fabulous value; 
inestimable. It is the wealth of the " Comstock lode" of 

It was the proprietors of the Nevada Bank that developed 
the "bonanza" mines, and those mines have reciprocated by 
developing the Nevada Bank. Their exbaustless resources are 
the reserve fund, which, if drawn upon to-day, would perhaps 
yield scores of millions — and, if fully developed, perhaps 
billions of dollars. 


With Mr. James C. l'"'lood the idea of establishing the 
Nevada Bank originated. His partner, Mr. W. S. O'Brien, 
entered heartily into the project, and it is their expressed in- 
tention that the bank shall earn a reputation based solely on 
genuine merit. 

Mr. Flood is the senior partner of the firm. He was born 
in New York city in 1828, and arrived in San Francisco in 
1849, a passenger on the ship Elizabeth Ellen. He had no 
capital except his native energy, and his early California his- 
tory was therefore interspersed with the various episodes of 
seeking and finding employment. He accepted any kind of 
work offered, by which he could earn his living and lay aside a 
little surplus for future capital. In 1854, he associated in busi- 
ness with Mr. W. S. O'Brien, and then they began the mining 
enterprises that have been so productive to them of financial 
success. In personal appearance Mr. Flood is of stout build, 
with blond complexion, earnest look, and demeanor befitting 
the business nature he has manifested. 

Mr. W. S. O'Brien is one of those rollicking, good-humored 
persons that are alwa3's happy themselves, and, being thus, 
communicate that mood to all with whom they come in con- 
tact. He is a bachelor, a little over forty years old; was born 
in New York city also, and came to California in 1849 on the 
ship Faralinto. He passed through a probation of toil, pov- 
erty, and sacrifice, during the first years of his California expe- 
rience. Mr. O'Brien is a very genial gentleman, and highly 
social. To his cheerful speech and friendly disposition much 
of the popularity the firm of Flood & O'Brien enjoy, is due. 
The partnership between these gentlemen was established in 
1854, and ever since, their interests have been mutual. 


The first notable mining enterprise they engaged in was in 
1862, and consisted of operations in the Kentuck and other of 
the Comstock mines. A few years later, the Hale & Norcross 
miue was the object of their operations, which was of such im- 
portance as to attract public attention to them as bold and suc- 
cessful mining speculators. In all their mining transactions 
they have generally succeeded in getting a controlling interest 
in the coveted property. 

The speculation by which they realized the most of their for- 
tune was in securing the control of the Consolidated Virginia 
and California mines, that in a few months in the early j^art of 
1875 so greatly advanced in value as to yield a competency to 
the fortunate possessor of a few shares. The rich develop- 
ments at that time called the attention of the world to these 
"bonanza mines," and especially to the persons who had the 
greatest interest in them. 

The firm is characterized for its fair dealing, and during this 
great mining excitement, that was to result so profitably to 
them, they advised many of their friends of the rich discover- 
ies, sufficiently in advance of the rise in stocks, to enable them 
also, to I'eap a share of the harvest. Their fortune is the result 
of the bonanza discovery, and in connection with it, their fame 
is world-wide; so it uoes not appear inappi'opriate that the 
Nevada Bank is here apoken of as a "Bonanza Development." 






THE streets of any important city reflect to a considerable 
extent the indoor life, habits, and business of its inhabit- 
ants. There is the merchant within, the vender of miscellane- 
ous merchandise without; the market man in his stall and the 
hawker of fish and fowl, crying out his stock on the highway. 

The jeweler whose store is a palace of Aladdin, has opposition 
in the dealer in "pure oroide, that will not turn, tint or tar- 
nish," who assembles a crowd about him on the corner, by a 
trick at cards or sleight of hand. The stock broker who pon- 
ders over his long columns of daily transactions, has on the 
walk in front of his office, a curbstone rival. The restaurant 
has a competitor in the " Flying Bakery" that stops at your 
door and tenders a savory steaming dinner. The juggler will 
show 3'ou a trick on the street for a "bit," that you must j)ay 
the prestidigitator on the boards of the theater a half dollar to 

So it is with the preacher who, when he prays, casts his eyes 
heavenward, and gazes with delight and j)ride upon the grace- 
ful fresco and rich paintings that ornament the ceiling of the 
sanctuary, while his knees are embedded in soft cushions and 
his hand rests upon the velvet upholstery of the pulj^it; or as 
he bends over his stand, and speaks in rhythmic eloquence to 
his gayly dressed auditors. His theme is echoed in the streets 
and alleyways of the city. 

Scarce a Sunday passes in San Francisco, without the regu- 
lar street preaching. On Sacramento Street near Leidesdorff, 
in front of the "What Cheer House, there is always on Sundays, 
a large throng of idlers, who either do not care to attend 
church or have not the courage to enter a fashionable " house 
of God," in their shabby attire. This, therefore, is a favorite 


corner for the street preacher, and at the usual hour for relig- 
ious services on Sunday, he is promptly ou the ground. 


San Francisco, is the chosen field of labor for numerous 
street preachers and lecturers, but of these there are only two 
■whose earnestness or enthusiasm continues with them and 
prompts their appearance on each succeeding sabbath. Of these, 
" Old Orthodox," as he is familiarly called by his congregation, 
usually devotes the hour between ten and eleven to his sermon. 

"Without a W'Ord of warning, he mounts a box in the middle of 
the street, and begins his lecture. He is a man of fine physique, 
good voice, and in his talks shows culture as well as research. 
His dress is neat and plain, and although his chosen work 
takes him out into sun and storm, he nevertheless has the ap- 
pearance of a well-fed and well-housed gentleman. He enters 
into his work with apparent earnestness, and his pleasant style 
of delivery, added to his friendly countenance always attracts 
a goodly crowd about him. He upholds no sect, advocates no 
creed, nor jDreaches any doctrine, save that of "Christ, and 
Him crucified.'' He appeals to the heart, is jDrofuse in illus- 
trations, and strikes at crime and vice in all its forms. 

As many of his hearers are of that class who are disposed 
to be vicious and intemperate, he dwells at length on the evils 
resulting from such sins. He does not frighten his audience 
away by calling upon them for contributions or aid, but makes 
them feel that not only is "salvation free to you and me," 
but his lectures also. At the close of his sermon be dis- 
tributes free, numerous religious papers and tracts, for which 
there is usually a great rush by the crowd, in the confusion of 
which he disappears. 

But before he has closed his services a voice is heard com- 
ing from the oi^posite corner, uttering the comforting words, 
"there is no devil, hell or immortal soul, and the wicked shall 
be no more; but the righteous shall inherit the earth, and dwell 
in peace, under the Monarch of the fifth universal empire — the 
Messiah." The crowd gathers about the speaker, and are 
apparently interested in his words. This is "Old Crisis," a 
most persistent street j^reacher and vender of a small publica- 
tion, bearing the euphonious title of " The Coming Monarch of 
the World and Herald of the ffth Universal Empire." His seedy 


appearance ■would indicate that lie is either somewhat of a. 
martjT: to his espoused cause, or that his work is unpopular, 
and therefore does not meet with encouraging su2:)port. 

In his lectures, he rails at the Protestant and Roman 
clergy, delights in uttering challenges to discuss some pet 
theory or doctrine, indulges in Greek and Hebrew quotations 
— substituting for the Anglo-Saxon words God, soul, and hell : 
EMiim, nepheah or losvche, and Hacks. He makes frequent 
vulgar allusions, and does not hesitate to spice his homily 
with obscene expressions, hoping thereby to gain favor in the 
eyes of his auditors, many of whom are of the vulgar class. 

If he is interrupted by a question or retort from the crowd, 
he immediately throws down the gauntlet, and expatiates on 
the "great boon of American law, that upholds freedom of 
speech, a free j)ress, and liberty." 

As the assemblage becomes restless, and begins to drop off 
one by one, he announces his real business (which is evidently 
to sell a sufficient number of his cheap papers to j^ay his 
board for the following or previous week); urges every one to 
come and buy a copy of his paper. "It will do you good," 
he cries, "it will enlighten you; it joroves conclusively that 
there is no hell, devil, nor immortal soul; it proves that the 
theories of modei'n theologians are dogmatic and fallacious; it 
only costs you ten cents a copy, and will insure you haj^pi- 
ness for the remainder of life." 

There are always some present who have not heard him before, 
and out of curiosity they buy a copy. After announcing that 
he will preach at such and such places in the afternoon, he 
retires from the scene, having furnished a topic for jest and 
sport to the idlers, for the remainder of the day. 


Near the junction of Sacramento and Leidesdorff Streets, 
there are located numerous cheap lodging houses and restau- 
rants. In these dwell many unfortunate and intemperate, and 
some vicious and criminal persons, all of whom are society- 
abandoned and poor. There are men who have occupied 
prominent positions in society, but have been precipitated to 
the low level by adverse circumstances; men who, becoming 
intemperate, lost self-respect, grew desperate, and are no 
longer respected by others; "poor but respectable persons "^ 


are there also, as well as professional vagabonds, loafers, and 

Of the class who may be styled itinerant work-hunters — 
going about from place to place, seeking a congenial job, ac- 
cepting few offers of work, and continuing in none, there are 
numerous representatives. There are honest day-laborers, 
who, after a week of toil, put on their Sunday clothes, and 
seek upon the street Sunday companions. Strangers in the 
city, who in rambling through the streets see the gathering, 
are attracted there. A few of the highly respectable folks 
also may be seen 'on the outskirts of the group. There are no 
females, except those that look down from half open windows. 
These are among the listeners to the street preachers, and for 
the sake of whose souls or pocket money, the exhortations or 
homilies are uttered from the street pulpit. 

Withal, they are an attentive and orderly congregation, and 
although there are sometimes difficult questions asked, and 
witticisms indulged in at the expense of the preacher, the 
meetings generally are conducted with harmony. An instance 
showing the perverted views entertained by some, is afforded 
in the following droll query. The preacher was telling how 
Christ cast the devils out of the man and caused them to enter 
a herd of swine, whereupon the whole flock rushed into the 
sea and were drowned. A voice in the crowd immediately 
called out: "What was the price of pork at that time?" 

Many apt retorts and sharp rejoinders are interspersed in 
the Sunday preaching services, and some repair to the ap- 
pointed gathering places simply to enjoy this part of the cere- 

" For all the evils under the sun, 
There is a remedy or there is none." 

Street preaching no doubt has influenced some to do better, 
and if so, it can claim the merit of being a remedial agent. 



"For some must work while others sleep." 

MANY who have lived in cities the whole of their lives, 
and nearly all villagers and rural persons, know but 
little of the labor that is performed in a city at night time. 
"When their day's work is done, and they are wrapt in sleep, 
the earth puts on her robes of silence, and toil throughout the 
world has ceased. They think that the owl's advice "to sleep 
all night and work all day, " should be followed by all man- 
kind, and do not give thought to those who disregard it. 

But at the midnight hour the turmoil of a city has not 
ceased. Its great pulse has not stopped throbbing, but only 
Treats with fainter sounding. The streets are gloomy with the 
shadows, and the deafening bustle of the business life of day 
is heard no more; but ever and anon an echo bounds from 
wall to corner, telling that somewhere in the city are toilers of 
the night. 

A footstep rings upon the dewy pave — it is the lonely 
guardian of the jieace upon his beat. A buzzing sound dis- 
turbs the quiet air, as the street sweepers pass with their 
swaying brushes. The clash of the printing j)ress breaks 
harshly upon the ear, and the roaring of furnaces and the 
steady stroke of the tireless engines in the factories are heard 

There are probably more than ten thousand people who are 
night-workers in San Francisco; not merely for a week or a 
month, but whose business is such as to require night labor 
continual l3\ "With some the hours of Avork may var^'; the 
lamp-lighters, for instance, being governed entirely by the 
rising and going down of the moon, and its monthl}' changes. 
At the gas-works, there are men constantly emj^loyed, both 
night and day, and also at the distilleries, breweries, and 
many different manufactories. 


The baker who would supply the early loaf must knead and 
bake his bread at night-time. The firemen who are employed 
at the engine-houses know no sleep when on the night watch, 
but patiently remain at their posts, on the alert to catch the first 
soundings of a call to conflict. On shipboard, along the 
wharves, and about the public buildings, night-watchmen 
stroll stupidly to and fro, counting each step to give the mind 
some occupation. 

In restaurants, hotels, and boarding-houses, bar-rooms, 
theatres, and the offices of the morning papers, by two or 
three o'clock, the work for the night is done; while with the 
vegetable gardeners, milkmen, and those who supply the 
food for the day, the work is just begun. Street-car drivers 
and conductors, letter carriers, the men engaged on the bay 
steamers, hackmen and expressmen, toil in the night, both 
earl^- and late, as their situations may require. At all the 
livery stables also are found night-workers. Poor women, 
who, during the da}^ are occuj^ied with regular family cares, 
remain up a great part of the night, sewing, that they may 
earn a pittance for themselves and family. 

Much of the sanitary work of the city is performed at night. 
The filth and debris thrown off from the city during the busy 
hoiu's of day must be removed, and many men find employ- 
ment in this kind of work. The sign is frequently met in a 
city: "Orders for night-work received here." 

In our modern civilization, were it not for the busy hive of 
night- workers, a city would be almost uninhabitable. AVe 
have got to living so fast that the hours between the rising and 
setting sun do not give time enough to perform the work that 
now seems to be a necessity. We cannot be content without 
a record of the current news every few hours. "Without the 
fresh morning paper, still damp with the early dew, men are 
loath to go about their daily business. We, at this remote 
point from the national capital, must know the proceedings of 
last night's congressional investigating committee, else we feel 
behind the times. 

The click, click, click, of the telegraph never ceases. We 
may "take on the wings of the morning and fly to the utter- 
most parts of the earth," but wings of the winds would be a 
slow coach upon which to send the news of the day. The 
lightning of the heavens, that flashes in the east and is re- 


fleeted over the north, south and west, in the twinkling of an 
eye, is grasped by the hand of Science, and at the bidding of 
man, cunies the news from sea to sea, from continent to con- 
tinent, and — may we not reasonably think that ere the nine- 
teenth century has closed — from star to star, and from world 
to world. 

Thus do we have need for toilers of the night, but it is an 
open ciuestion whether this need is legitimate. The thieving 
class who ply their villainous avocation in the night, "love 
darkness rather than light because tJieii' deeds are evil," and it 
is possible that a progression whose supporting requirements 
cause men to go contrary to the laws of nature, may also have 
within it the elements of evil. Yet, while we have night- 
workers, we should not forget them, for theirs is a gloomy and 
hard life. The absence of the invigorating sunshine is felt, 
and their thoughts partake of their shadowy surroundings. 
They may for a time be vigorous of body, but they sooner 
decay and die. 

THE "hammam." 34.3 




A STROLL through the streets of San Francisco reveals 
many striking peculiarities that are not met in even 
the larger cities in the United States. The diversity of the 
foreign element, so many of whom have taken up their abode 
among us, gives a truly cosmopolitan cast to almost every 
phase of life, whether business or social. It is but a step from 
Paris to Hongkong; Madrid and London stand side by side; 
Home and Dublin merge into each other. 

The people you meet on the streets suggest this; the archi- 
tecture indicates it, and the babel of voices that strikes so 
harshly and unmeaningly on your ears corroborates it. 

The most exquisite architectural design, and that which 
more certainly suggests another clime, is the " Hammam," lo- 
cated on Dupont, near its junction with Market Street. The 
iirst impression when suddenly coming upon this building is, 
that you have either been transformed, in the twinkling of an 
eye, to a turbaned Turk, and find yourself wandering amid the 
*' golden-domed shrines of Imperial Stamboul," or that the 
gaudy structure before you has been bodily transported from 
that ancient city and planted in this modern metropolis, as a 
model of antique art. 


After devoting several years to a critical examination of all 
the most noted bathing establishments in Europe and the East, 
with a view to constructing one in this country that would be 
superior to them all, Doctor Loryea decided that the climate 
of California was the more favorable wherein to demonstrate 
the benefits of the hot-air bath, and, therefore, San Francisco 
was chosen as the place where the bath-house should be built. 
The result of his investigations is realized in the " Hammam," 


reasonably supposed to be the most perfect and elegant Turk- 
ish bath ever built. 

A description of this bath-house as published in the Over- 
land 3IoviJiIij, gives due prominence to the respective compart- 
ments, and is herewith inserted: 

"Ascending the steps from Dupont Street, the visitor is at 
once delighted by the presence of a beautiful bronze fountain, 
whose long jets shine up in the sun. Over the entrance-door 
is a finely executed inscription iii Arabic : ' Bishmillah, Alia il 

' ' To the right of the entrance hall is an apartment supplied 
with refreshments and appropriate stimulants. On the left is 
the office, which communicates by means of tubes with all the 
various departments of the Hammam. It is here that the 
bather is requested to deposit his valuables, register his name, 
and receive his check. Advancing, he enters the mustaby, or 
cool room, the centre of which is occupied by a marble bath, 
six feet deep, six feet wide, and thirty feet long. Here, too, a 
silver fountain plays. On either side are lounging and smok- 
ing rooms, each splendidly fitted up, and separated from its 
neighbor by handsomely carved and painted trellis-work iu 
wood, through which the cool air jiasses without obstruction. 

" The ceilings and walls are magnificently frescoed. Over- 
head the light enters through two large circular skylights of 
colored glass, toned down so as to impress the mind with a 
sense of freshness and coolness, and in perfect harmony with 
the colors of the frescoed walls. Over the doors are appropri- 
ate Arabic insciiptions from the Koran, and similar ones are 
on the walls in suitable places, for the comfort of good Moslem 

"Immense plate glass mirrors reflect everything from all 
portions of the apartment, and the visitor is filled with a 
dreamy soothing languor which is essentially oriental, while 
the illusion is heightened by Turkish, Persian, and Asiatic sur- 
roundings. Scientific precaution has even carpeted the floor 
with fine Indian matting, which does not retain even a modi- 
cum of heat. The mustaby, or cold room, is the opodyterium, 
conclave, or spoliatorum of the Romans. Succeeding the mus- 
taby is the tepidyrium, corresponding to the " sea " of the Jews, 
and the pisciniuvi of the Romans. It is the warm room, Avhere- 
in a heat of 120° to 130° Fahrenheit is constantly maintained. 

THE "hammam." 345 

Everj'thing in this department corresponds with its name, and. 
imparts or suggests warmth. 

" The next in order of apartments is the calidariiim, or suda- 
torium, which corresponds to the hot-stone baths of the Rus- 
sians, Icelanders, and some tribes of American Indians. The 
heat of this room is maintained at 160° to 180°, and can be in- 
creased at the option of the superintendent. Here, also, every- 
thing is in keeping with the name and use of the apartment. 
The whole room is composed of marble, with a large marble 
table in the centre, surrounded by marble seats; the table be- 
ing used for the shampooing process, which is very seieutifia 
and important. 

"The employes are all imported from Turkey, having been edu- 
cated to the business from the early age of eight years. 
Shampooers generally work for eight hours in the baths, and 
if there were anything debilitating in being exposed to the 
lengthened endurance of so high a temperature, it would cer- 
tainly have made itself apj)arent in them, which is not the case. 
The handsome arched ceiling of the calidarium reflects and 
radiates the heat equally to all portions of the room, which is. 
lighted by superb chandeliers of exquisite design, and in per- 
fect harmony with their accompaniments. Separated from this 
room by thick felt curtains, especially made and imported for 
the purpose, are three other smaller apartments, in two of 
which the temperature is much higher than in the main room. 
Having passed through the calidarium and its auxiliaries, the 
visitor meets the ladies' entrance, on Bagley Place, where a 
flight of stairs leads to the second and third floors, the second 
floor being devoted to their use, and the third to giving all 
kinds of medicated baths. 

"The ladies' rooms are sumptuously fitted up, and lavishly- 
furnished with everything that can conduce to luxurious ease 
and intense enjoyment. The room dedicated to giving mercu- 
rial vapor baths is composed entirely of transjoarent plate- 
glass, so that the bather can be seen by the operator at all 
stages. This is a novel and valuable idea, introduced by Dr, 

" Without attempting a description of the ladies' apartments, 
to which justice can only be done by personal inspection, 
special admiration is called up at the manner in which the re- 
searches of science have been utilized and combined to render 


the Hammam as j)erfect as possible. It is an established fact 
tbat chemistry enables the adept to extract the active ingre- 
dients from medicinal waters, by means of which they can be 
trausiDorted in small bulk, redissolved, and the waters repro- 
duced without any loss of effect, but conferring the power to 
remedy some existing defect in the original waters, and thereby 
secure a certainty in their operation which is not always obtain- 
able in their unimproved condition. 

" Doctor Loryea has happily availed himself of the powerful 
aid afforded by chemistr^^ and after thoroughly examining the 
active principles of the most celebrated sanitary waters in 
Europe, condensed those principles and is prepared to admin- 
ister all the most noted baths of the spas. One can revel in 
the salt sea- water bath of the MediteiTanean, without jiassing 
through the Straits of Gibraltar. The carbonated or alkaline 
baths of Vichy are brought to our doors. The famous ' serpent 
baths' of Schlangenbad have been transported to this city. 
Those of Kesselbrunnen, Swalbach, Marienbad, and Bareges 
have taken up their abodes here. Electric baths, administered 
by skilled operators, and even perfumed cosmetic baths for the 
complexion, are now among the treasures within the reach of 
our beauties. The healing -sdrtues of Bethesda, Siloam, and 
the Jordan have been restored and concentrated for our use." 


From the remotest ages, the bath, whether used as a cura- 
tive agent, or enjoyed as a luxury, always carried with it the 
great object of utilizing the action of air, water and heat, on 
the human body, so as to excite perspiration. To obtain this 
end, various rude and imperfect means were employed; but 
however faulty and primitive the contrivances resorted to, they 
were, nevertheless, such as tended to produce the desired 

The great theraj)eutic qualities of the bath, it is true, could 
not be fully developed by the faulty constnictions generally 
used; but, as benefit was derived from the imj^erfect applica- 
tion of the princii^le, we may learn to aiDj)reciate its true value 
when carried out scientifically, and in accordance with the 
teachings of physiology. 

Esteemed and valued, it flourished as an institution among 
the renowned nations of antiquity, and when it Avas buried 

THE "hammam." 347 

amid the splendid ruins of the Greek gymnasium, and shared 
the destructive fcill that overwhelmed Imperial Rome, it sur- 
vived in distant portions of Western Europe and Asia, to 
Ibecome, eventually, the great luxury and necessity of modern 

The vital functions of the skin, in their relation to the ani- 
mal economy, -were formerly underrated, because they were 
not projDerly understood. The investigations, however, of 
modern physiologists, aided by powerful microscopic agency, 
liave clearly revealed the truly wonderful organism of the skin, 
and demonstrated how essential its sound and active vitality is 
to the due performance of the functions of healthy life, and 
how it is designed as a medium through which the internal 
organism can be safely acted upon in case of disease. 

In health, the skin is the seat of various secretions which 
seek the surface of the body to be eliminated as excrementi- 
tious matter from the system. Hence the skin performs func- 
tions analogous to those of the lungs, so far as it takes in and 
gives out similar matters to those taken in and given out by 
the lungs; and, for this reason, has been described as the 
"assistant apparatus of the lungs." 

It is recorded, that a boy who was covered with a coating of 
gilt to represent the Golden Age, in a pageant given by Pope 
Leo X. died in a few hours, in consequence of the impeded 
functions of the skin. We find that disease and inability to 
perspire are coincident. Consequently, force perspiration and 
you subjugate disease. 

For this purpose, no means are so certain and efficacious as 
heat; and it is marvelous that this, the strongest of the powers 
of nature, should have been neglected during so many ages. 
A means by which we operate in the laboratory; by which all 
culinary operations are carried on; by which all mechanical 
arts subsist; by which the earth yields her produce; and, in a 
word, the whole mechanism of the universe, is put in motion. 

The scaly deposits of the scarf-skin, which, in the natural 
and healthy condition of the body, exfoliate to keep the pores 
free, are not removed by mere external bathing, nor are the 
excretory functions of the skin stimulated, as they unquestion- 
ably are by the hot-air bath. Ordinary washing may keep the 
surface of the body in what is considered a state of cleanli- 
ness; but, as compared with the action of the hot-air bath. 


such cleanliness is like removing filth from the mouth of a 
sewer, instead of flushing the whole sewer itself. 

The "Poet of the Sierra," while undergoing the ablution of 
a Turkish bath, exclaimed with delight: "By George! they 
have worked down to that red shirt I lost in '49." The ex- 
quisite sensations experienced by the bather while taking a 
hot-air bath, and the condition of improved health and invig- 
orated frame in which it leaves him, are finely illustrated by 
the Arabic inscription over the door of the calidarium — "Pain 
enters not here." 






IN a country so favored as California — possessing a climate, 
a fertility, and a natural beauty that renders it as pleasant 
a locality for human habitation as has been provided on earth — 
"with such desirable opportunities for the perfect enjoyment of 
life — it is most strange that man should seek his own destruc- 
tion. That "first law of nature," self-preservation, that is im- 
planted in all animate creation, amid such surrounding^, should 
naturally in man become strengthened, and, instead of weary- 
ing of life, he should endeavor to shield the brittle thread, 
and, if possible, extend its span beyond the prescribed limit of 
threescore years and ten. 

There is, therefore, an inconsistency in the fact that Califor- 
nia buries more suicides, in proportion to its population, than 
any other State in the Union. There must be an underlying 
principle in its business or social system, yet unrevealed, that 
impels this fatality. When God and Nature stand in opposi- 
tion, it is evident that man himself has develojDed the causes 
that lead to such dire results. 

San Francisco — that holds up her hands to the world, and 
cries out — "Behold, how majestically I sit at the Golden Gate, 
with one foot upon the sea, the other upon the land, holding 
the commerce of the world ! See my crown of gold, and the 
silver bands that encircle my arms ! My robes are dectod with 
ever-blooming flowers, my skirts trail among waving fields and 
purpling vineyards! I am intoxicated with my glory and my 
wine! Behold!" San Francisco, that Queen of the West, is 
pregnant with disease. At her heart is the canker that poi-' 
sons the life element that flows through the arteries of her 
great body — the State. 


The number of suicides in San Francisco in 1874, was 58; in 
1875, 64 — an average of more than one a week. It is con- 
fined to no particular class of individuals, or no condition or 
circumstance in life. Wealth and poverty, sick and well, 
American, European, Asiatic, male and female, contribute 
alike to the list of those who willfully commit self-murder. 


Suicide and insanity result from similar causes. Some medi- 
cal writers assert that suicide is a proof of insanity. They as- 
sume that the love of life or the instinct of self-preservation 
cannot be overcome until the reason is dethroned. But early 
education, nationality, and the habit of thought and life, may 
have much to do with self-murder. Among the principal im- 
mediate causes are financial embarrassment and domestic and 
social trouble. 

There are but few persons who have sj)ent years in Califor- 
nia without meeting with reverses in business. In no part of 
the world are jDOverty and affluence so nearly mingled in the 
same cup. Nowhere is fortune so fickle; nowhere do so many 
fall in a day from wealth to want. Such transitions naturally 
disturb the mental balance, and destroy the power of self con- 
trol. Desperate and dishonest efforts to recover or conceal, if 
unsuccessful — as they generally are — only add remorse of con- 
science to other exciting causes of suicide. 

There are other suicides by persons who, though they have 
had no wealth to lose, have not possessed strength of mind 
to enable them to encounter povei'ty and disappointment; and 
who have just enough intelligence to perceive that their lives 
are worthless to themselves and to society. Disaj^pointed love, 
licentiousness, and every variety of dissipation, also tend to 
swell the number. A disregard of the laws of nature, as re- 
lates to mental and physical health, prostitutes the j^owers, 
and invites that depression of spirit that so often precedes the 
act of self-destruction. 


The favorite weapon of defense, the pistol or revolver, seems 
also to be the favorite implement of the suicide. Nearly one 
half of the number of suicides have employed this as the 
means to accomplish their pur2:)ose. Between cutting the 
throat, hanging, and drowning, there seems to be but little 


choice. Bj these methods collectively, one thii'd depart, while 
the residue resort to the less tragic mode of taking poison, the 
various preparations of ojoium being preferred, and next to 
these, strychnia. 

That the pistol should be the most popular means, is easily 
accounted for. This weajDon is alwaj's carried about the 
jDerson by rowdies, gamblers, and night-walkers, — in short, by 
all that class of people who are likely to encounter personal 
difficulties. Others than these are also in the habit of going 
armed. Even women of loose habits carry their derringers, 
and almost everybody knows how to handle a pistol. It is 
perfectly natural, then, that the weajDon jDrovided for taking 
the life of another should be employed in the moment of des- 
peration as the means of self-murder. 

That insanity exists to an unusual degree in California, and 
is more particularly developed in San Francisco, there is little 
doubt. The population is not a fair average of the human 
family. The most excitable and unsettled jDCople have been 
attracted hither from all parts of the world, bringing with 
them a temperament favorable to the development of insanity. 
And then the circumstances to which they are exposed are 
inimical to the exercise of self-control. 

In the earlier history of the State, when those who came to 
California had to encounter so many difficulties on the road, 
as well as after arrival, there were but few who had not left 
home and friends and a quiet life behind them. This absence 
and comparative isolation was a great deprivation. There 
were no social and moral influences to which they had been 
accustomed, about them, and this created a longing for that 
W'hich they could not enjoy, which condition of mind often 
results in a species of insanity. The change from a passive 
life to one of adventure, and ofttimes hardship, together with 
the impetuous pursuit of wealth that characterizes the 2:)eoiDle 
of California, pushing business under a high brain-pressure, 
is more than some intellects can bear, and the result that fol- 
lows is mental derangement. 

Men in San Francisco are not content with a little portion 
of the good things that abound, and are wretched and de- 
spondent unless they prosper. Reverses are common, and 


there is a want of fortitude and patience to endure them. Per- 
haps the most potent cause of insanity in California, is the ex- 
cessive indulgence in intoxicating drinks. "When the traf&c in 
these is the most profitable pursuit, and children, youths and 
adults have no hesitancy in entering the saloons and drink- 
ing, it is not at all startling that the asylums for madmen 
should be the most expensive charge of the State. 

As aggravating to the mind, and promoting insanity directly 
or indirectly, might be mentioned ill-health in a great variety 
of forms, w^ithout the means of relief afforded by home and 
kindred, and which is fanned into intolerable severity by the 
jirevalence of quack literature, in newspaper advertisements 
and distributed circulars; family troubles and disappointed 
affection; spiritism, fortune-telling, and trickery of various 
kinds, by which weak-minded or credulous people are led away 
from the control of judgment and reason; absence of religious 
faith and religious observances, which, even though there be 
no hell, nor heaven, nor soul in man, serves to steady and anchor 
the mind amid the storms of life. Religious belief and ob- 
servance is better for the mind, even if blended with bigotry 
and superstition, than no religion and no belief at all. 

A large proportion of mankind are susceptible of insanity. 
Some are prone to it, while with others it is impossible . Very 
few, however, are put to the extreme test. Thousands lead a 
normal life, presenting throughout their entire career, exam- 
ples of mental health, simjDly because they escape the causes, 
physical and moral, by which reason is often dethroned. In 
projDortion to the prevalence of those causes, madmen will 
multiply. New countries, which attract the adventurous, en- 
terprising, and ambitious from the four quarters of the world, 
will always furnish a large projDortion of insane j)ersons. 

Insanity prevails to a remarkable extent in California among 
those in the more humble walks of life. Those whose minds 
remain year after year almost inactive, the illiterate and unre- 
fined of the laboring classes, furnish more insane subjects than 
come from the brain-workers and those whose mental labor is 
most severe and constant. Although San Francisco develops 
comparativel}'^ more insanity, and induces a greater number of 
suicides, it is withal a pleasant reflection that she has but few 







"YXT'HEN, little more than twenty-five years ago, the mission- 
V V ary Fathers gathered about them their small band of 
ignorant converts, and, in the Mission Dolores, offered up 
prayers to the Most High for the prosperity they had enjoyed, 
the thought, perhajDS, did not occur to them that daring the 
nineteenth century — a wonder working century — that part of 
the San Francisco peninsular to the north and east of them 
would echo the commotion of a million intelligent inhabitants, 
or that the barren waste of ever-shifting sand dunes ■ that 
spread out in gloomy desolation between them and the placid 
Pacific, would be transformed into a beauteous landscape clad 
in perennial verdure — its hills crowned with forests, its valleys 
emitting the delicate fragrance of ever-blooming flowers. This 
has not yet been realized; neither is the work of the nineteenth 
century complete. Four years ago, Golden Gate Park was 
only a name. The grounds that its limits comprised were 
those same wild sand hills that the mission Fathers contem- 
plated with hoiTor; that the fogs of centuries have rolled over. 
The remaining two and a half decades of the century will clothe 
these hills with classic beauty, and Golden Gate Park will 
know no rival as to extent and scenery. San Francisco, too, 
ere the century has closed may count her million inhabitants. 
The ratio of increase in population warrants the prophecy, that 
this will be realized also. 

Golden Gate Park is four years old. It comprises more than 

one thousand acres, and in its boundaries almost every style 

of landscape is jjresented, from the level plain to the towering 

and j)recipitous cliffs. It is traversed by gorges, dotted with 



gently rolling bills, backed by mountains, and opened out hy 
beautiful valleys. 

Previous to tbe selection of tbis site for tbe great pubbe 
park of San Francisco, tbere were some wbo contended tbat 
tbe beigbts beyond Soutb San Francisco toward Islais creek 
sbould be embodied in its precincts. Tbis would bave given to 
tbe grounds a rugged and jierbaj^s more romantic pbase, and. 
would bave involved mucb more work in preparing long and 
safe drives — a feature in all public grounds more appreciated 
tban anytbing else by San Franciscans. A leading object witL 
tbe projectors of Golden Gate Park, was to provide a grand 
public drive, tbat would afford a pleasant approacb to tbe 
Ocean. In tbis tbey bave already succeeded. View, extent, 
and smootbness considered, tbere is not a finer drive on tbe 

Tbe extent of tbe park is a matter of astonisbment to 
strangers. Tbe grand avenue, tbrougb wbicb tbe main park is 
approacbed, is tbree fourtbs of a mile long and 275 feet wide. 
It is magnificent in its windings tbrougb groves and dense 
sbrubbery, wbose jDerpetual verdure is at all seasons refresbing 
to tbe eye. "Wben witbin tbe park, an expanse of tbree miles 
in lengtb by balf a mile in widtb, traversed by promenades, 
bridle patbs and drives, invites tbe pedestrian, equestrian, or 
driver to follow tbeir mazy windings into tbe labyrintbs of 
bedges and borders. Smootbly macadamized roads lead to 
quiet summits, from wbicb landscape and marine views of won- 
derful beauty open out before bim. 


The greatest difficulty tbat bad to be met in improving 
Golden Gate Park, was tbe reclamation of tbe ever-sbifting 
sand bills. A greater part of tbe surface ground in tbe iuclos- 
ure, is formed by tbe sand-wasb of tbe ocean, and was con- 
stantly drifting from place to place by tbe action of tbe wind. 
Tbis, of course, bad to be stayed. Tbe only known means of 
attaining tbe desired result was to propagate a vegetable 
growtb tbat would send forth abundant fibrous roots to bold 
tbe sand in its place. Tbe lack of fertility in tbe sand was an 
obstacle to tbis. Tbe Califoruia Lupine was known to thrive 
in sandy soil and it was therefore chosen as tbe jjlant tbat 
•would effect the reclamation. Large quantities of the seed 


■were obtained and sown, and in the four years since its plant- 
ing, it has proven a perfect success. Under its shelter stronger 
plants and shrubs are fast springing up and a few years hence, 
W'hat was a bleak and barren waste will present a panorama of 
tropical sjDlendor. 

A fence, constructed of boughs of trees and brush, extends 
along the ocean beach, and acts as a barricade to the encroach- 
ing sand. The flying drifts are caught in the eddy it creates, 
and are precipitated to the ground on the leeward side, and 
add to the efficiency of the bulwark. 

Thus nature has been made subservient to science, and her 
frowns converted into smiles, 


Californians, as a rule, are pleasure lovers — fond of amuse- 
ments of all kinds — although somewhat loath to spare the time 
that should be devoted to careless recreation. They are fond 
of manly sports, and delight in spanking roadsters — and this 
last indulgence very naturally leads them to the smoothly paved 
and broad drives inside the limits of Golden Gate Park. On 
pleasant holidays, and Sundays in particular, the Park pre- 
sents a lively scene. Gold -mounted carriages of every ap- 
proved pattern, drawn by richly caparisoned steeds, driven by 
uniformed livery-men, whose brilliant buttons are conspicu- 
ously numerous, and containing beautiful belles and gallant 
beaux, are seen whirling swiftly over the open road, now lost 
behind a curve, now penetrating a thicket — appearing and re- 
appearing, rivaling each other in display, as well as emulating 
each other in merrymaking and jollity. Less pretentious turn- 
outs mingle in the scene, and numerous equestrians vie with 
each other in knightly pose and perfect horsemanship. 

Along the promenades, the less fortunate but more healthful 
pedestrians stroll singly or in groups, and hapj^j^ playful chil- 
dren romp and sport, adding their joyous screams and laugh- 
ter to the pleasurable excitement. 


The gentlemen composing the Board of Park Commissioners 
have been most faithful in the discharge of their duties. Much 
credit is due to their intelligent enterprise. Only from Ibeir 
earnest efforts, have the magical effects in the improvement of 


the grounds been produced. The whole business intrusted to 
them has been conducted with strict economy and great accu- 
racy, in every detail. 

The engineer, under whose personal supervision the improve- 
ments have been prosecuted, has developed a genius that is 
acknowledged to be superior. Every one engaged in the vari- 
ous departments of the work has been notably faithful in his 
labors. This is a precedent that might well be followed by 
municipal officials and attaches, j^articularly, and by all ad- 
ministrators of public funds generally. Investigations would 
then be infrequent, and confidence in official integrity would 
again take root in the public mind. 


The "Park Guard" consists of forty-five men regularly 
organized and in an efficient state of discipline. They have 
their designated beats and hours, and attend to various other 
duties assigned them. To preserve personal safety and order 
in so large a tract of ground, which is so numerously and 
constantly visited, is a task of considerable responsibility. 
Ladies often ride through the park unattended, and are as 
free from peril or annoyance as they woidd be in the most 
frequented street in the city. The visitor is as safe in the 
most secluded nook in the grounds as he would be on the 
much traveled highway. The most common offense that is 
committed, and for which arrests are promptly made, is fast 

The visitors to the Park number about fifteen thousand 
weekly. When communication is had between the city and 
park by street railway, it will be more numerously visited. As 
it is now, those who cannot afford to hire a horse or carriage, 
XQust either walk or forego the visit. The walk is more ex- 
tended than most persons wish to undertake, and hence many 
are thus deprived of the benefits that should be enjoyed by all. 






"TXyilAT a human medley is a city ! "What phases of life are 
V V therein represented ! To know familiarly a single cos- 
mopolitan city, is to know the world. It is humanity concen- 
trated; and the manners, customs, habits, thoughts, feelings, 
and actions of its inhabitants represent these diversities as they 
exist iu whatsoever land or clime. It is a book that is much 
conned, but has never been learned or imderstood; many of 
the leaves are yet uncut. We see its massive walls, its spires, 
but we know not what those walls contain within. We see its 
people on the streets, but we know not of their lives. With 
its external we become familiar, but the internal is hid in the 
dejDths of mystery. Our closest scrutiny is only superficial. 
The light and shade are visible — but whence that light, and 
why the shade? 


How desolate and deserted would the streets aj)pear with- 
out the street-crier. Our ears become so accustomed to his 
call that his absence creates uneasiness. "Ti' to men'," 
comes to us in familiar tones, and we glance up the street and 
see a sturdy crier plodding slowly along, as if the box on his 
shoulder and furnace in his hand were too great a load for him 
to bear, or the monotony of his life had transformed him into 
a mere machine, whose motor was unchanging, and kept up 
the same incessant action, never speeding nor slacking. He 
has traversed a block, and again we hear the call, "Ti — ' to 
men'," and he peers into narrow alley- ways and open doors, 
hoping that he may catch the beck of some unfortunate cook 
who has allowed the tea-kettle to ' ' boil dry " and the solder 
to "melt off." 


"Ti — to men'," and he glances wistfully across the street, 
scrutinizing every open window. Ah, now, his pace quickens, 
and his countenance lights up, for he has descried, through 
the lattice-work, a waving hand, and he knows full well that 
he has found some tins to mend. He follows the walk around 
to the rear of the house, and disappears. 


Tinkle, tinkle, tinkle. Tinkletinkletinkle. Tinkleinkleti- 
kinkle. " 0-ho, get your razors ground !" and there goes the 
grindstone on wheels. The gearing looks wonderfully rickety, 
but the more it wabbles the louder the bell jingles, and hence 
the more eyes it attracts. How brawny the face of its proprie- 
tor, and how clumsy he appears as he jogs along over the irreg- 
ular pave ! But all this while there is a tinkle, tinkle, tinkle, 
and anon the " Get your razors ground!" echoes through the 
street. But why does he turn into that narrow lane, as if to 
escape our gaze? Oh, it was that smooth-faced youth, who 
had nodded him thither; he wanted Ms razor ground. 

These perambulating grinders develop quite a business some- 
times. There is one turn-out, in particular, that attracts con- 
siderable attention ; and, because of the novelty of the estab- 
lishment, does quite a thriving business. The machinery by 
which the grinding is accomplished is monnted on four wheels, 
and consists of a large hollow drive -wheel, wherein may be 
placed two good-sized dogs. This is connected by a band to 
the grinding apparatus, so that when the large wheel is started, 
the dogs, to keep from tumbling about, use their legs very 
freely, which action keeps the wheel revolving, and when once 
under headway there is no alternative for them but to keep 
moving until their master deems it expedient to give them 

The business of this establishment consists principally in 
grinding the knives and tools of the butchers and restaura- 
teurs. Of these he not only gets his regular pay for work 
done, but many times squares accounts with his faithful dogs, 
by paying them their salary in scraps and crumbs from the 
stalls and tables . 

The original "Get your razors ground " character occupies a 
corner on the curb, at the intersection of Bush and Kearny 
Streets. He has grown old in the sei-vice, and his locks are 


fast silvering. Day after day, and night after night, he sits on 
his little low stool, with his feet on the treadle of his machine, 
and whether the street be thronged or the passers-by be few, 
the little mechanical men on his sign-board keep up their saw- 
ing and grinding, and the deep, guttural call is heard, at regular 
intervals — "Get your razors ground." He is a little, one- 
«yed old gentleman, and is intelligent, and remarkably in- 
genious withal — having invented and patented a number of 
mechanical devices, among which was a quartz mill for crush- 
ing ore, that is said to be valuable. San Franciscans will often 
recall to memory this little old man, with his hat always tied 
down close over his ears, even when the ghouls of the church- 
yard will be echoing his call of ' ' Get your razors ground " 
over his grave, and the pigmies on his sign-board will be saw- 
ing away to the music of his successor's voice. 


The collectors of rags, sacks and bottles, may be seen almost 
any day slowly threading the streets in the residence portion 
of the city. The outfit consists, firstly, of the rag-man him- 
self, who is most commonly rather older than young, and in 
his general make-up is a living advertisement of his business 
pursuit. His clothes are rags, his lap-robe a sack, and we 
have every reason to suspect that a bottle is within easy reach. 
Secondly, is his charger — steed, horse, or plug, as you may 
choose to call him — which there is no doubt, has the bronco 
blood, and is in the same animal gradation as his master. 
Lastly, the squeaking vehicle that bears the weight of the rag- 
man himself, and the commodities in which he traffics. An 
outfit like this gains a living for a family. 

The rag-men are seldom seen dismounted from their wagons, 
are never in a hurry, never seem to be doing any business, yet 
their loads gradually increase as they travel along, and must 
soon be delivered to headquarters to make room for more. 
The peculiar inflection with which they cry out "Rags, sacks 
and bottles," attracts the ears of the little folks, and every 
urchin in the nursery that can lisj) its mother's name, calls out 
in mimic tone: "Wags, sacks, bottells. " 


There sometimes appears on the principal streets of the city 
a magnificent equipage — "a coach and four" — with a solitary 


passenger reclining at ease on the silken cushions. The 
liveried coachman maintains the dignity of a king's favorite 
courtier, and as he gracefully manipulates the reins, his gaily 
caparisoned team j)rance lightly along, as if it was the advance 
leader of a gorgeous pageant. The public gaze uj^on them 
in wonder and admiration, but the occupant maintains a dig- 
nified indifference, and they jDass out of view. 

There is a peculiarity about this personage that is marked. 
His face is generally emaciated, though glowing, and his hair 
falls in wavy ringlets far down over his shoulders. His dress 
is somewhat clerical, except the hat, which is the broadest 
planter style. Upon the w^hole, the picture is rather gro- 
tesque, and never fails to attract attention. 

For several days, this same equipage may be seen on those 
streets that are most traveled, and public curiosity will begin 
to be manifest. Then there will be a sort of transformation. 
The same team will again appear, the same driver, but a dif- 
ferent occupant. This time a jDerson whose very look excites 
mirth; who has such a humorous face and bearing that all who 
look upon him smile. He bears in his hand a banner trimmed 
with gold, uj)on which is emblazoned the words "World's 
Relief." Upon each of the horses, also, are silken coverings 
bearing the same device. At nightfall, where the throng is 
thickest, this team darts uj), halts, and the humorous man 
rises in his seat, bows profoundly, and informs the eager 
crowd that he will sing them a song. The people are thus 
attracted to the sj^ot, and after the singing is over, a few 
humorous remarks serve admirably to introduce the "famous 
Dr. McBride, a scientist, naturalist, botanist, and a graduate 
of the most noted medical college in Paris, who will address 
the assembly for a few moments." Slow, and with devout 
solemnit}^ there ascends the steps into the carriage, the 
first personage we have mentioned, his broad hat pushed back, 
displaying a formidable brow, and his graceful locks trailing 
over his shoulders in sublime profusion. "Gentlemen of San 
Francisco," he says, "I have the honaw to remawk that I have 
just retwuned fwom an extended journey thwough the Owi- 
ental countwies. My visit was in the intewest of the Woyal 
Academy of Sciences de Pawee, and in my re-sawches in that 
stwange countwy, that abounds in so much that is of peculia* 
intewest to the scientist, I discovewed the Bawm of Gil-lead — 


the gweatest wemedial agent that the wowld "will evew know, 
and which I shall pwesent to you to-night in the fowm of my 
'Wowld's Welief.' Gentlemen, I" — (a voice: "Quack, quack; 
oh, give us a rest "). Thus he continues until the wonderful 
properties of his preparation are fully set forth, and then the 
songster takes the stand, and sings and sells medicine (?) 
alternately, keeping a crowd about him, and doing a thriving 

Other venders of quack preparations, station themselves in 
the middle of the street, and with a box for a rostrum, and a 
tripod stand before them denounce the public as fools, if they 
fail to perceive the force of their reasoning. "What lessons in 
physiology and hygiene may we not learn if we give attention 
to the wisdom that is proclaimed from the streets of a city by 
the agents of a quack fraternity. 


How numerous are the newsboys in San Francisco! Around 
the doors of the publication offices of the evening papers at the 
hour the paper issues, they swarm in such numbers, that travel 
is sometimes obstructed. How eager they are to get the first 
sheets the clashing press throws out! How they clamber for 
place, and press forward toward the distributing clerk ! And 
how gaily they speed away, when they have secured their num- 
ber, shouting and singing at the top of their voice — " Evening 
Post, first edition," "Bulletin or Examiner," five cents; and 
when a person passes near, " Post," " Bulletin" — " don't you 
want a copy, sir?" — " Post, Mr.," "five cents, latest edition," 
and when he has gone, cry aloud again "E-ven-iug Post or 
Bul-le-tin." They ski^D into the business offices, jump on the 
cars, scream at the hotel entrances, gather at the wharves. In 
rain and storm, the cry is heard in every direction. Late at 
night, the streets give echo to their shouts. In the morning, as 
soon as the first footsteps are heard upon the pavements, 
"Alta, Call or Chronicle," goes ringing on the quiet air. 
Every arriving car or steamer is besieged with these busy little 
bodies, that ply their vocation amid so many besetments. 

How their eyes sparkle when a flaming headline of their 
paper announces a tragic death, a suicide of a prominent citi- 
zen, a flood or fire in a mine, a panic, or anything surprising 
or startling to the community. In exciting times they swarm 


by the hundreds upon the public highways. " Latest advices 
from burning mines." "Another bank suspended — full per- 
ticlers in the Bul-le-tin and Po-est." 

On the days that the dailies issue double-sheet editions, they 
throng every street, penetrating far out into the suburbs. 
" Double-sheet-ed Post, fi-eve cents." " Even-ing papers, 
three for a dime." 

What a variety of voices! Some with the power of a man; 
others, little baby voices that have scarce ceased cooing on their 
mothers' knee (if, perchance, they ever knew a mother, and 
heaven knows there are many that never), and who timidly lisp 
in feeble tones — " buy my paper thir, pleathe." Another calls 
out so shrill and loud that he is heard for blocks away. Some 
are in rags, and some well clad; some are puny little fellows, 
whose looks tell that they will not long face wind and weather 
to mingle their voices with the din; while others are hale and 
rugged lads, inured to hardship, and proof against fog and 

Where are the homes of the gamin ? That is a queiy that 
is difficult to answer. Some have comfortable homes, kind 
parents, and have of their own accord chosen to embark in 
business for themselves. Others, and of these there are many, 
have never known the meaning of that sacx-ed word Home. 
They may have parents, but not /a//iers and mothers. But 
many of them are alone in the world, seeking food and 
cover where they may; driven about from one rude shelter to 
another, as the whim or disposition of 'humanity may prompt; 
with manly hearts in their bosoms, brave enough to fight for 
room in this world, and who with surroundings favorable to 
development would grow up to be honored among men. As 
there always will be gamins, and since the very fact of their 
•existence entitles them to consideration, there should be more 
provision made for their comfort and jDrotection than is now; 
and during the night, at least, they should be gathered into 
comfortable quarters, where the surrounding influences would 
be such as to inspire them with a noble ambition. 


Were it possible for the ear to catch the different cries that 
are continually echoing through the streets, rising above the 
hum of solid business, what a chorus it would be. The song 


of the orange-men — " Or-r-anges, sweet Los Angeles oranges, 
two-bits a dozen" — would blend into " wild-game, wild-game," 
and " ti' to men'," would be drowned by the rolling call 
of "rags, sacks, and bot-tells." "Her-r-ring, fresh her- 
ring," would lose its significance by the more attractive ciy 
of "oysters and clams;" "get your razors ground," Vv'ould 
echo back the strange refrain of "glass p'tin," until there 
would be such a babel of voices that only an occasional word 
could be distinguished. In the confusion would be heard, 
"tinkle, tinkle, tinkle — oh get your razor's — ;" "gentlemen, 
all ye who are afflicted will find relief by using my — ;" "rags, 
sacks, and — ;" "E-veu-ing Post and Bulle — ;" "ti' to — ;" 
''cure you of rheumatism;" "wild game," "oranges sweet;" 
*'glass p'tin;" "my wowld's welief," "is pure o-ro-ide thafe 
"will not turn taint — " "for only five cents a copy." "Try 
your lungs, gentlemen, it will expand your — " "bottles — " 
*'and the whole will cost you but a — " "Call or Chronic — " 
*'case of neuralgia that was pronounced incurable by medi- 
cal — " " oyster and clams." "Walk right up to the battery 
and see how much lightning your nerves can — " "get your 
razor's — " "p'tin — " "to men' — " "sacks and — " "wild — " 
*' Los Angeles — " "infallible remedy for tooth-ache, ear-ache 
and — " "morning Alta." 

These are some of the cries that are heard in a city — but 
there are wails unutterable. 






WESTWARD from the city, and about midway between 
the western margin of the bay and the ocean, towers 
up a solitary joeak. A large rude cross, erected in early days, 
stands ujDon its highest point, to perpetuate the memory of the 
ancient Spanish missionaries, who dwelt and worshiped God in 
quietude, so long' in its evening shadow. This jDcak is Lone 
Mountain, and the cross that is its crown, also marks the 
resting jolace of San Francisco's buried dead. 

The rolling hills about its base, on either side, are dotted 
thick with white gleaming stones or painted boards, the domes 
and steeples of the city of the dead. 


Why the name "Laurel Hill" was borrowed and substi- 
tuted for the local and original Lone Mountain, we do not 
understand, unless it is intended to suggest comparison. 
While Lone Mountain (or Laurel Hill) Cemetery in natural 
beauty has no superior, and in cultivated improvements is in 
accord with the youthful city Avhose dead repose beneath its 
sacred soil, brought into comparison, as it is by bearing the 
same name, with its eastern namesake, its natural beauty 
wanes before the cultivated charm and grandeur of the latter. 

Lone Mountain is appr9priate. There is loneliness in the 
graveyard! There is loneliness in the silent tomb! The very 
stones and monuments that boldly rear their heads above the 
cheerless death-chambers, make mute appeals for silence. 
Where death is enthroned, silence reigns; and only in silence 
is there a perfect realization of loneliness. Then let San 
Francisco's burial ground be called by its native name — Lone 
Mountain. The little warblers whose throats swell with ec- 
static trills, that ring out in shrill echoes through the forest. 


respect tlie hallowed ground, and warble soft notes of love 
when jDerched upon a drooping bough above the graves. 

Lone Mountain Cemetery is the city's burying ground. 
Standing by the cross on Lone Mountain, and looking north- 
ward, a few lofty monuments, a few arched and gothic vaults, 
and many smaller emblems of remembrance to the dead, stand 
out to view upon the undulating landscape. Entering the en- 
closure, the broad avenue divides into numerous divergent 
paths, that lead between green borders and hedges until they 
disappear in the unimproved wilds. Vaults of massive granite 
or shining marble, within whose echoing chambers the wealthy 
dead repose embalmed; monuments of granite, sandstone and 
marble; tablets and slabs of marble, porphyry and wood; sur- 
mounting the green sod, or standing sentinel over the little 
mounds of earth: are seen on every side. 

Inscriptions telhng only of the virtues of the departed, or 
the lamentations of surviving friends, extolling the qualities 
in the dead that were not recognized in the living, make the 
visitor to conclude that the Angel of Death chooses well his 
recruits — admitting into his ranks only those whose heavenly 
virtues rendered them unfit to inhabit a sin-cursed world. The 
same old story, "We never appreciate a blessing 'till we are 
deprived of it." 

We read the touching epitaph, we admire the wreaths and 
crowns of flowers that are strewn over the graves, we see the 
•weeping mourner watering the new-turned sod with her tears 
of grief, and our hearts grow sad, and we feel that there yet 
remains in the hearts of some, those tender sentiments of love 
that even death cannot efface. But we are forgetful of the 
living. There are brave hearts yet engaged in life's struggles, 
to whom even a word of sympathy would give joy, and dis- 
perse clouds of gloom, that we think not of. They may be bat- 
tling with misfortune, bowed down with sorrow, stricken with 
disease, grappling with poverty; but Ave hold in reserve our 
friendly aid until they have passed beyond the reach of our 
symj)athy or encouragement — until their putrefying bodies lie 
in the grave. 

Lone Mountain Cemetery is not unlike other city grave- 
yards. The memory of San Francisco's noble dead is kept 
green by towering monuments; her wealthy sleej) in costly 
sepulchres; and her poor and forsaken sleep just as sweetly in 
abandoned graves. 


The epitaphs seen there tell the same tale of grief, of sor- 
row, of comfort, of praise, and of resignation, that have been 
told over and over again. The flowers may be more fragrant, 
and bloom more constant; the breezes may blow less bleak; 
the verdure may be more abiding; the sun may shine brighter; 
but the dead of other lands or climes await in silence the same 
resurrection as do they who are interred in Lone Mountain. 

Standing on the highest eminence of Lone Mountain, is a 
monument of marble, erected to the memory of one whosfr 
deeds Calif ornians delight to recall. On one side is chiseled 
"Mechanic," and on the other "Senator." That is simple, 
but it is enough. 

The most touching epitaph is that inscribed to the memory 
of Arthur French, who lost his life in 1860, at the wi-eck of the 
steamship Northerner, near Cape Mendocino. He was first 
officer of the vessel. The inscription simply tells: "He an- 
swered those who tried to dissuade him from returning to the 
wreck, after he had made seven ineffectual attempts, ' I have as 
much to live for as any man, but my life belongs to the people 
on board that shij), and I will go and stay with the captain. 
If I die, tell my wife and children I died doing my duty.' " 
That was a noble death ! A broken mast marks his tomb — a. 
fit emblem of the perils of his life, and the manner of his death. 

There is a monument in the more neglected part of the ceme- 
tery, where the poor put their friends to rest, and strangers lie 
forgotten — the rude sculi^turing and lettering of which, more 
certainly tell that death had robbed a loving heart of its most 
cherished treasure, than were it graved in imjoerishable marble 
and planted on a granite foundation. Nine visitors of every 
ten would pass it unnoticed, and perhaps the tenth would see 
nothing to call forth his respect or sympathy in the ordinary 
epitaph. A lough-shapen wood slab, painted white; a rude 
tracing, in black, of " Christieu Hansen, died March 6th, 1867, 
aged 42. Erected to his memory by his wife." That is all. 
But the grave is well kept; the mound is always green; and on 
every Monday morning there are a few fresh flowers strewn 
upon it. There is a whole volume of love in that grave. 

The ground devoted to the interment of deceased members 
of the Volunteer Fire Companies is beautifully located. The 
monuments and tombstones are modest and appropriate, and 
the whole inclosure is kept in good order. 



To the stranger the Chinese vault and their burial grounds 
are perhaps more attractive than any other feature in Lone 
Mountain Cemetery, because of the peculiar rites and ceremo- 
nies observed and jierformed at a Chinese funeral. But the 
graves of these "heathen," as seen in San Francisco's ceme- 
tery, are mum as to the significance of any ritual service, feast, 
or sacrifice that may have been performed at their creating. 
The vault is a wooden structure, in which numerous styles of 
architecture have been followed, but none maintained, sur- 
mounted by an oriental steej)le and cornice, in which divers 
wooden bells are conspicuous. At the front of the vault is a 
trough, filled with earth, containing the remnants of number- 
less fanc.y-colored tapers and "Joss" sticks, whose nauseous 
vapors are indispensable at a Chinese funeral. 

It is certainly an injustice to their dead, if not to the living, 
to permit the desecration of their vaults and tombs. They are 
bespattered with mud and filth, battered with stones, and some- 
times defaced in a most irreverent manner. The animosity that 
many persons bear to the living, seems to extend even beyond 
the grave. 

The lots used by the different Chinese companies for inter- 
ment, are each surrounded by a common board or picket fence, 
and at the entrance a sort of canopy is erected, under which 
is the sign or name of the comi^any. The graves are scarcely 
visible, being almost on a level with the general surface of the 
ground. A rude brick furnace, and a cheaply constructed 
table, a plain head-board with incomprehensible hieroglyphics 
upon it, complete the furniture on the premises. 

In the future, when that reaper whose name is Death, and 
whose sickle is Time, shall have gathered in the harvest that is 
now fast ripening, there will be many sheaves among the gar- 
nered, over whose graves will spring up elaborate commemo- 
rative statues and monuments; the march of improvement will 
keep pace with the march of time, and Lone Mountain Ceme- 
tery will be no less attractive than Greenwood or Laurel Hill. 


To the south of Lone Mountain is the Masonic Cemetery, 
and to the west, the Odd Fellows — both of which present a 
neater and more finished appearance than Lone Mountain 
Cemetery. The Orders, whose dead find rest in these grave- 


yards, are numerously represented in San Francisco, and are 
powerful and wealthy. The bond of brotherhood that holds 
the living- in such harmonious unity, is not broken by death, 
but is even more manifest to the world at the grave than in 
any of the ordinary circumstances of life. 

The graves are well kept. That desolate spot that in public 
"burial grounds tells too plainly that some have died who were 
among strangers; who left no friendly heart behind to cherish 
their memory, by smoothing the sod or watering the grass over 
their graves; that abandoned plat that shows so many new- 
made mounds, is not seen in the grounds devoted to the burial 
of Masons and Odd Fellows. 


East of Lone Mountain, and nearer the city, is the Catholic 
graveyard. Viewed from a distance, it might be taken for a 
lilliputian village; the low -gabled head -boards with the 
crosses upon them, look like the ends of so many little houses. 

This cemetery mantles the top of a considerable hill, and 
its landscape is not nearly so j)icturesque as the other ceme- 
teries. The comparative absence of trees renders it more 
cheerless than it would otherwise be, and therefore there is 
not that attraction in it to strangers that there is in the others. 
There is also less stone and marble used for marking graves, 
and much more wood and brick. 

The fact of the cross being universally employed on the 
graves, renders the view somewhat monotonous; yet this is 
symbolical; and perhaps if the cross was not borne, there 
would be no compensating crown for those whose bodies lie 
in the tomb. 

"Earth to eaith," is exemplified in the cemetery. Were 
the grief for the dead inconsolable, what a world of mourn- 
ing this would be! But Time is a potent healer. It is not a 
pleasant thought, that when we die a few short months will 
veil us from the memory of those we loved, and there will be 
no longer vacant the place we thought we filled ! Yet the most 
powerful potentate, to whom nations are wont to bend the 
knee in reverence, may sink into his grave without disturbing 
nature's poise — there is only a ruffle on the surface, when all 
settles quietl}' back to the different channels of action. How 
insififnificant is man ! 

E. J. Baldwin's hotel and theatre. 369 





EJ. BALDWIN, proprietor of the " Baldwin Hotel," and 
. " Baldwin's Academy of Music," is a native of Ohio. In 
1853, after an exciting and hazardous journey overland, he 
arrived in San Francisco, 

His first business venttire in the city, was the purchase of the 
Pacific Temperance House, which he kept for only thirty days, 
when he disposed of it for a j)rofit of five thousand dollars. 

Being full of resource, and gifted with surprising discretion- 
ary powers, Mr . Baldwin was not long in discovering a profit- 
able business opening. He therefore, in 1855, engaged suc- 
cessfully in brick-making with another gentleman. 

Shortly after this time, he was offered a position at Fort 
Point, to superintend the government brick-yard, which he 
accepted. While there, his position yielded him a profit of 
from one thousand to fourteen hundred dollars per month. 
He continued in this for about two years, when he turned his 
attention to the livery business, in which he was constantly en- 
gaged for six or seven years following. 

While conducting this business, Mr. Baldwin made numer- 
ous purchases of real estate, and also became initiated into the 
mysteries of mining stock speculations, which was then rapidly 
developing into the most important financial business in the 
city. The jnagnitude of stock operations gave scope to his 
speculative powers, and the activity and excitement that attends 
the pursuit was congenial to his ambitious nature. So he at 
once gave his whole attention to mining stocks, determined to 
secure his share of the profits that so certainly would be theirs 
•who had the nerve to push out into the stream and the judg- 
ment to pilot their craft safely through the dangerous break- 
ers that lay in their course. 


Mr. Baldwin proved a good navigator. He was so success- 
ful in his " deals " and " turns," that his less fortunate brotber- 
voyagers were not content to concede his good fortune to a. 
sujjerior business ability, but reflected, with some degree of 
consolation, no doubt, that it was only his luck. This was the 
origin of the name that he is familiarly' known by — " Lucky " 
Baldwin — and which, on account of subsequent and continued 
successes, still clings to him with persistent tenacity. 

Those were the early days of California Street stock opera- 
tions, and the business was yet in its infancy. It was therefore 
a matter of serious comment among dealers, to have an " out- 
sider " step in and take the lead, and it is very possible that 
Mr. Baldwin's prosperity excited a feeling of envy. The con- 
sequence was, that there were numerous "rings" formed and 
"jobs" put up to thwart his plans, but he continued self- 
reliant, entered the contest determined to win, and seldom 
suffered defeat. 

In the winter of 1874-5, during the great bonanza excite- 
ment, in the contest for a controlling interest in Oj^hir, Mr. 
Baldwin stood alone against what was then called the " Bank 
ring," He so manipulated his plans relating to leading stocks, 
that at one time he could have precipitated a panic, and come 
oat with fifteen or eighteen million dollars ahead; as it was, he 
netted the snug sum of five millions. His favorite stocks have 
been those representing mines on the Comstock lode: Crown 
Point, Belcher, Consolidated Virginia, California, Ophir and 

Mr. Baldwin's California career furnishes an example of 
what can be done by enterprise and energy, attended by strict 
business integrity. His " luck" has been the luck that comes 
of one's own making; a luck, if such it be, that only nature 
endows some men with, and that consists in a comprehensive 
mind, directness of purpose, and withal, a native energy to 
push one's way through to a desired object, regardless of any 
obstacles that may intervene. Other luck than this, like Mr. 
Greeley's men of genius, is as "scarce as white crows." 

His hotel, which is just approaching completion, occupies 
much of his attention. The theatre is a model of elegance; 
and the hotel, when finished, will, without doubt, surpass in 
its arrangement for comfort and convenience, any public 
building of its kind in the country. These are Mr. Baldwin's 

E. J. Baldwin's hotel and theatre. 371 

"pets," and all knowledge relative to their proper construc- 
tion has been eagerly sought, and no expense nor labor, to make 
them complete in every detail, has been "withheld. 

Mr. Baldwin was one of the projectors of the Pacific Stock 
Exchange Board, and since its organization has held the office 
of j)resident. He heartily enjoys turf -sporting, and is the 
owner of "Rutherford" and " Grim stead," two of the finest 
and fleetest running-horses on the turf record. 


The "Baldwin," for under that name will this hotel be 
thrown open to the public, is a rhomboidal building, with the 
irregular dimensions of 138 x 210 x 275 feet, located on Mar- 
ket Street, at the junction of Ellis and Powell. Its frontage 
on Market Street is 210 feet, and on Powell, 275. The main 
entrance is on Powell Street, fronting which, on the first floor, 
are the offices, reading-room, billiard and bar-room. 

Assuming that the plans of the architect and projector are 
realized, a handsome structure is seen, rich in architectural 
embellishments, and symmetric in its grand proportions. It 
is six stories high, with a basement; surmounted by one i^rin- 
cij)al dome, 162 feet in height, with numerous other towers of 
lesser altitude, from each of which there rises a tall flagstaff, 
tipped with gold. 

The general architecture is in the style of the French renais- 
sance; mansard roof, corinthian columns, and classic cor- 
nices, with modern combinations and ornaments. The build- 
ing is neither brick, wood, nor iron, but all of these materials 
are embodied in its construction. 

The office, reading-room, billiard and bar-rooms, are paved 
and wainscoted with marble tiles, and the broad stairway 
leading from the office to the second floor, is composed of 
solid slabs of marble, the balustrades being constructed of 
vari-colored woods. The diniag hall, located on the second 
floor, fronting on Ellis street, is 138x32 feet in dimensions, 
with a w^ing 40x40 feet, fronting on Powell, and is divided 
into different compartments by folding doors, or opened into 
one grand hall, as may be desired. There is also a children's, 
dining-room, 40x42 feet in dimensions. The public parlors 
and reception room, are also on the second floor: these form 
commodious rooms at the angle of the building, commanding 


a view of Market, Fifth, Powell, and Eddy Streets, the other 
being immediately over the office. 

The whole of the first floor except that part occupied for the 
offices, reading room, billiard and bar-rooms, barber-shojD, and 
a marble fountain, is divided into stores. The other floors re- 
peat themselves in each other, being divided into family suites 
of five compartments each — two chambers, a parlor, clothes- 
room, and toilet-room. A broad corridor traverses the entire 
length, on each side of the building, communicating directly 
with every room on the floor, the grand and i^rivate stairway, 
and the different elevators. 

From each suite of rooms a light-well extends from the first 
floor to the sky-light on the roof, affording perfect ventilation 
and light. There are two public elevators; one for passengers 
exclusively, leading from the office to all the floors above, 
around which the grand stairway is coiled, circle after circle, 
until lost in the blue air that hovers over the roof. 

Nickel-plated hydrants, with endless coils of hose, that when 
unrolled, extend the one to the other, are placed in niches off 
the corridors, and protected by plate-glass doors. Upon the 
roof a broad jDromenade extends around, from which a magnifi- 
cent panoramic view of the city, bay, and surrounding coun- 
try is had. And there, too, where one would least expect it, 
clear up on top of the roof, sheltered by one of the towers, is a 
cosy little room, elegantly carpeted, and furnished with luxuri- 
ous chairs and sofas; with tables to write upon; and, in the 
midst of all, two or three of the most superb billiard tables, 
designed for none other than fair soft hands to play upon. 
This is the ladies' billiard room. Above it, and easily reached 
by convenient stairs, is another room, the walls and roof of 
•which are of plate glass. Ranged around on all sides, are 
pots and baskets of the choicest flowers, blooming in all the 
colors of a California sunset, and breathing their delicate per- 
fume upon the tempered au*. This is the temple of health, the 
bower of sunshine and fragrance; or, to speak more plainly — 
the conservatory. 

In the basement, are located the store-rooms, butcher shops, 
laundiy, steam engine, and pumps, and the steam-heating ap- 
paratus. A private elevator connects on the second floor the 
kitchen with all serving rooms in the basement. Thus we see 
the general outlines of this hotel. 

E. J. Baldwin's hotel and theatre. 373 

There is no place where hotel patrons consist of families 
more than in San Francisco. This hotel is designed more fully 
to meet the wants of such patrons. It is a family hotel. The 
rooms are so planned that any number desired can be included 
in a separate suite. There is not a dark room in the house, 
and there is not a suite that does not get the sunshine sometime 
during the day. 

The protection against fire, it seems, is complete. Two arte- 
sian wells, flowing not less than 50,000 gallons of water each a 
day, supply the immense tanks on the roof, which are con- 
nected with pipes leading throughout the building; hydrants 
stationed at proper intervals, with hose constantly attached; 
self-acting electric fire alarms or detectors in each room; per- 
forated pipes, projecting above each dome and tower, through 
which a perfect torrent of water can be showered over the roof; 
and besides all this, five different pipes leading from the side- 
walk to the roof, and there connected with long sections of 
hose, ready at all times for the use of the Fire Department: 
would certainly afford protection from that dreaded element, 
fire. Further than this, there have been, during the construc- 
tion of the building, other precautionary measures adopted that 
•would greatly retard if not entirely check, the progress of a 
fire, should it ever gain any headway. 

Mr. Alexander Macabee, the superintendent of the build- 
ing, has caused to be placed between the ceiling and the 
floor of each story a layer of fire-proof cement, varying in 
thickness from two to three inches; the openings between the 
joists have likewise been closed, forming air-tight chambers, 
thereby precluding the possibility of a draft, without which 
fire can never penetrate a partition or ceiling. 

Prior to the erection of the hotel, Mr. Baldwin visited many 
of the eastern cities, and personally inspected the modern 
hotels there, with a view to embody in his hotel enterprise all 
improvements for the comfort and luxury of the patrons that 
the progressive ideas of the times have developed. 

The one idea of making the " Baldwin " a family hotel has 
been constantly kept before the minds of himself and the 
architect. The arrangements for the comfort and safety of 
its occupants, their health, amusement and home-like enter- 
tainment, are perhaps more complete than in any other hotel 
in the world. The finish is elegant. 


A peculiarity in the arrangement is that each floor is a com- 
munity of itself, being conducted by different attendants, 
having an independent sujoply of gas, though of course sub- 
ject to tbo control of the principal office. The call-bell regis- 
ter for all the rooms on a floor is located at a central station 
off the corridor, which communicates with the office by a 
email parcel elevator. A person is constantly in attendance 
at each of these registers to do the bidding of the guests who 
occupy his particular floor. 

It might be urged that all these luxuries and conveniences 
would add greatly to the expense of living at such a hotel. This 
is to a degree true, but in a city like San Francisco, where 
there are many persons maintaining splendid private estab- 
lishments, harassed and annoyed by the cares that these 
beget, simply because there have not until recently been 
public houses that offered all the desired comforts and luxu- 
ries. The elegant provisions made by Mr. Baldwin will be 
much appreciated, and the cost for enjoying them will not be 
so great as if kept up at private expense. 


A mere exterior view would lead an observer to think that 
the Baldwin Hotel and the Academy of Music were indis- 
tinct buildings. But the plans of construction show them to 
be as distinct and separate as adjacent buildings usually are. 

The hotel being the larger, completely shuts in the sjjace 
occupied by the theatre; and this fact accounts for the rooms 
in the hotel occupying front positions. 

A theatre, from the very nature of the purposes for which 
it is used, must exclude sunlight; and hence it is not necessaiy 
that it should occupy a prominent jDOsition on the street. For 
the purposes of a hotel, however, the contrary requirements 
obtain, and therefore, by combining the two, all space is 
utilized; this is the skill of the architect, to plan so that there 
will be no waste room. 

Baldwin's Academy of Music is the finest theatre building 
in the city. It is not large; its seating capacity accomodating 
seventeen hundred persons; but for elegance and stj'le of 
finish, for comfort and cheer, it doubtless has no superiors, 
even in art-loving Europe. It is characterized for its sub- 
stantial embellishments; every ornament that is used in 

E. J. Baldwin's hotel and theatee. 375 

its decoration having been applied by skilled hands. It is 
modeled after Booth's New York. 

At the grand entrance, on Market Street, two handsome 
chandeliers, pendent from the richly-carved mouldings illu- 
mine the sidewalk and street, and sparkle invitingly to the 
passers-by. Just within the vestibule stands the olHce, which 
is faced with French walnut paneling, carved in exquisite 
designs. A double staircase, massive and beautiful, of the 
same material, leads to the balcony circle. Upon the richly 
carved newels stand pedestal torches, brilliantly lighting up 
the room and revealing the delicate fresco of the canopied 
ceiling. Pushing back the crimson doors, and entering, the 
■visitor is confronted by large mirrors, that seem to invite him 
into mazy halls and corridors infinite. Following along the 
corridor, the auditorium is reached, and the splendors that 
meet his gaze are almost bewildering. 

The auditorium comprises the orchestra, balcony, and family 
circles. There are six proscenium boxes on each side, finished 
in superior elegance. In the rear of the dress-circle are ten 
magnificent mezzanine boxes. Above, depending from either 
side of the ceiling, are two large crystal chandeliers, that shed 
their brilliancy upon the splendid scene beneath, which charm 
every sense of the beholder by its wonderful beauty, while far 
above, the paintings in the dome, that so faithfully represent 
Music and Comedy, are quickened by the warmth of colors, 
and to the imagination enact a play whose characters no 
mortal songster or comedian has ever yet aspired to delineate. 
The stage is hid from view by a pure crimson satin drop- 
curtain, which, when drawn up, droops in graceful folds from 
the proscenium arch, forming a rich frame-work to the actors 
and scenery behind. 

The prevailing color of the upholstery is crimson, which 
gives to the room such a warmth, and cheerful air, that, whether 
the seats are filled or occupied by but few, there is no feeling 
Bor appearance of desolation. The woodwork is jDainted in 
party-colors, ornamented with gold. The walls are painted 
in imitation of drapery, and the ceilings are resplendent with 

So perfect are the arrangements for sight and sound, that 
there is not a seat in the house but commands a good view of 
the stage, and every word that is spoken is heard full and clear 
at the remotest corner. 


The stage is capacious, though not designed for spectacular 
plays. It has every aj)purtenance for the legitimate drama 
and comedy, and the whole paraphernalia is very complete. 
The dressing-rooms are numerous, well arranged and airy, and 
the green-room is comfortably and tastefull}'' furnished. 

The architect of the Academy of Music and the hotel, was 
Mr. John A. Remer, who designed and superintended the 
architectural construction of the Lyceum and Union Square 
Theatres in New York, and j^lanned Hooley's, in Chicago, and 
Wade's Opera House, in San Francisco. This he considers his 
most skillful and artistic work. 

The cost of the hotel, furnished, and the theatre, will 
exceed two million dollars. The two principal chandeliers in 
the theatre were imported at a cost of sixteen hundred dollars 
each; the satin drop-curtain was obtained at an expense of six 
thousand dollars, and for the central painting in the dome of 
the auditorium, ten thousand dollars was paid. The whole 
expense for frescoing was thirty thousand dollars. It was exe- 
cuted by G. G. Garriboldi, a New York artist. The act cur- 
tain was also painted by this gentleman, and is a beautiful 
work of art. 





A \ 'T'H.O hath gold can live well in San Francisco, for the 
V V markets are perhaps as well supplied as any in the 
world. And, too, this supply is lasting, subject to no freaks 
of the weather. As to variety, there is no summer of luxury 
and winter of famine, hut every day in the year, the choicest 
fruits and vegetables that the country produces are displayed 
in the markets, with all the imported delicacies that are for- 
bidden the residents of other climes, at certain periods of the 

San Francisco has no burning summer sun to wilt or 
wither the more tender fruits, nor winter frosts to nip the 
flavor from them. The city markets are continually aglow 
with tempting delicacies. But except at their ripening" 
seasons, when they are more abundant, the rarest fruits, and 
sometimes the more common, are sold at prices beyond the 
reach of the poor. "Transportation is expensive, winter 
crops are small and difficult to mature," is ample argument 
to justify the dealer in charging big prices. Lettuce, radishes, 
green peas, celery, cauliflower and the more hardy vegetables 
are, however, obtainable at moderate rates; and of the fruits, 
ajDples, winter pears, and oranges, are usually offered at very 
reasonable prices. Yet with the peculiar advantages Cali- 
fornia offers to the fruit and vegetable growers, both as to 
quantity and variety, the San Francisco markets should be 
able to furnish the whole list of the common kinds at prices 
that would place them in abundance upon the tables of every 

Freights! freights! is the cry, and no doubt the high, 
charges for transportation is the secret of the prevailing high 
prices. There are hundreds of bushels of good fruit that 
rots under the trees where it falls, simply because of the 


exorbitant tariff that most of the transportation companies 

The meat and fish markets are also very attractive features 
in San Francisco. These are well stocked with every variety 
that the appetite craves. Both meat and fish are cheap — the 
latter in particular being so abundant as to sometimes almost 
be a drug on the market. For a nominal outlay, a feast of 
the favorite varieties may be prepared. It is a gratifying fact 
that what is ordinarily termed the necessities can be obtained 
at very low prices. The wheat product being so large renders 
breadstuff cheap; and the abundance of fish, by the law of 
competition, holds the different kinds of meat at a moderate 

A visit to either the California or Centre Market is an in- 
teresting pastime, and never fails to astonish those who dwell 
in that part of the country where the year is but the alternat- 
ing seasons of heat and frost. The abundance of tropical 
fruits would be remarked, and the great variety of California 
products would excite surprise and admiration as well. They 
would perhaps note the characteristic difference in the style 
of doing business from what they were accustomed. Almost 
everything is sold by the pound. A pound of apples is an in- 
comprehensible quantity to those who have only bought and 
sold them by the bushel or dozen. And so with potatoes and 
other vegetables. The nearest approach to measurement that 
is had is "basket," "box" and "bag." If you want about 
a half bushel of apples, peaches, or pears, you will be asked to 
take a "basket," which is an indefinite quantity, perhaps more 
than a peck yet not so much as a half bushel. If you desire 
a greater quantity, then you must take a " box," which is like- 
wise a vague amount. You will be requested to purchase a 
"bag" of potatoes, a "frame" of honey, and a "roll" of 
butter — all of which are subject to any variation of quantity 
that the whim of the packer may suggest, yet apj)roaching so 
nearly to a common standard that the difference would not be 
discovered except by actual test. Of the berries you may 
either buy a "basket" or " box," and with grapes it is both 
" pound" and " box." Thus the buying and selling of fruits 
and vegetables is attended almost unconsciously by a consider- 
able traffic in lumber and jute fabrics, for all of which the 
consumer must certainly pay. 






THERE is a growing sentiment throughout the United 
States, and even overlapping to foreign shores, that is 
productive of much discord and disruption in the social sys- 
tem. As a nation — whether considered by sectional divisions, 
or as a whole — we are governed by one supreme ruler, whose 
name is Fashion. And what is Fashion, but public sentiment 
in fantastic disguise ? Legislation is of no avail, if not in accord 
■with the popular sentiment. That is the basis of our free insti- 

As pertains to citizenship, right of possession, and religious 
belief, freedom is given us by the law. But our liberty of 
action and expressed opinion is restricted and hampered be- 
yond belief, by — "What will people say?" That little inter- 
rogatory phrase signifies nothing, and in itself is altogether 
indefinite ; but how wonderfully potent in its effect ! States- 
men, authors, artists, and — we had almost said — scientists, stop 
in the midst of their most earnest work, and with a glance, 
both retrospective and prospective, ask themselves the ques- 
tion — "What will people say or think?" This influence is 
the prompter of action in the highest and lowest social j^osi- 
tious; its power extends down the whole grade of humanity. 

We have been known to boast of our "free institutions," of 
our "independence of thought and speech," yet it is a rare 
occurrence to find a person that ignores the existence of this 
influence, by act or word. What is most strange in the mat- 
ter is, that all deprecate it, and fret under its galling weight ; 
but continue to conform to its exactions, and sustain it. It is 
Society's edict ; it is fashion ; and to be out of fashion is to be 
out of mind. Yet this is the natural outgrowth of a repub- 


lican government; it is the true principle of democracy; and it 
■would be a -wholesome influence, and one that should be fos- 
tered, only that we have not attained to a civilization so refined 
and wise as to admit of the development of this principle, with- 
out disaster. Until a higher standard of humanity is univer- 
sal, society, formed as it is by the masses, will be debased, and 
its rules and actions will retard true progression. Under sucli 
circumstances, stability of character and purpose exists only 
in a very limited degree. Men become fickle and irresolute, 
because their efforts are not earnest, but assumed, for " pol- 
icy sake." Their secret thoughts may be right, but expressed, 
they conform to the popular sentiment. Each succeeding gen- 
eration apparently manifests this fickleness more than the pre- 

It is possible, then, that the divorce mania is among the 
legitimate offspring of society. Society, at least, winks at the 
proceeding, and there is no ban of ostracism placed upon those 
who sever the marriage bond. They are commended more than 
condemned ; hence it has come to be so popular. 


In San Francisco, the divorce malady seems to have taken 
epidemic form. During the twelve months of 1875, there were 
more than six hundred applications for divorce, three hundred 
and fifty of which terminated in the dissolution of the mar- 
riage tie. A few applications were denied, others were j)end- 
ing, and many were withdrawn by consent of the parties, a 
reconciliation having been effected ere the suits were termi- 

The old and young, the rich and poor, whether foreign or 
native-born, are alike seized with the mania, and seek redress 
through the courts. Those who have lived together for a score 
of long years, sharing each other's joys and bearing each 
other's burdens, and the newly-wedded pair yet unacquainted 
with each other's good or bad qualities, are in the list. 

San Francisco does not appear an exception to the State. 
California, throughout, furnishes the records of its great preva- 
lence. Indiana was once the favorite resort for relief from 
"hymenial woes," but at the present rate of progress, Califor- 
nia will soon be the Mecca whither those whose bonds are 
galling may fly for relief. It is pleasant to know, however. 


that the law-makers of the State have, by recent enactment, 
■limited the grounds upon which divorces may be obtained, to 
such an extent that it will, at least, be more difl&cult to effect 
a legal dissolution than it has in time past. This may stay the 
tide until public sentiment will change its tactics, and frown 
ujDon such conduct as disgraceful to intelligent beings, and 
disastrous to the welfare of the country. So long as society 
chuckles over family disagreements and social scandals of 
whatever nature, the courts will have much divorce business 
to attend to, and unprincipled husbands and wives will con- 
tinue to discover some "incompatibility of temper" sufBcient 
to warrant a dissolution of the sacred bond. 


These words were once the conclusion of a vow that was 
considered the most solemn and sacred that could be uttered. 
Their full import was understood, and when they had passed 
the lii^s of the bride and groom, there was no mental reserva- 
tion that could furnish a shadow of excuse for a non-fulfill- 
ment of the pledge they sealed. The heart also had recog- 
nized their significance, and there was not only a union of 
hands, but a union of life and destiny. 

To-day, they seem to be but a meaningless utterance, a 
mock j)hrase in the mouths of the central figures of a formal 
assemblage, where more interest is felt in the etiquette of the 
ceremonies than in the impressiveness of the vows that are 
taken. Their significance is apparently not thought of — it is 
the established form of the service; but why it is thus worded, 
is beyond comprehension; in fact, it is of small importance 
any way. "If Charley, or Fred, or Maud, or Nellie, don't 
prove to be a good husband or wife, — Oh, dear me, I can't 
endure it! So it makes no difference as to the vow I take — 
but 1 know you will, won't you dear?" — and that is about the 
sum of serious reflection before the ordinary marriage. 

The jDCople have grown so accustomed to things as they now 
exist in the social world, that they do not think of the evils 
that may result, else there would be more outspoken denun- 
ciations of them. To get a divorce is only getting rid of an 
unpleasant and boorish companion. No one ever supposes 
that there are most always two lives wrecked, some innocent 
children perhaps corrupted for life by the example of the 


parents, and often times cast upon the world homeless. No 
one seems to think it possible that a heart is ever broken at 
such times. Yet these are apart of the drama; there is some- 
times tragedy interwoven — but seldom burlesque. It would 
be better, many times, if death should step in and dissolve the 
contract by limitation. 


The most common causes of divorce in San Francisco, are 
adultery and intemperance. "Extreme cruelty," also induces 
many sejDarations. If a person's knowledge of San Francisco 
society was gleaned from what he learned by a constant at- 
tendance at the different divorce trials in the courts, he would 
be justified in the opinion that the city was inhabited by a 
wrangling population of semi-barbarians; that morality and 
refinement were ignored almost entirely; that the common 
rules of decency and self-respect were seldom, if ever, ob- 
served. So disgusting and scandalous are the details that a 
trial brings out, that even the judges and lawyers, whose deli- 
cate perceptions have become dulled by constantly listening to 
tales of domestic woes, have, in some instances, refused to hear 
the revolting complaints. 

It frequentl}^ transpires that persons of great wealth grow 
weary of each others society; finding, strange to say, after 
many years of wedded life, that there exists between them an 
irreconcilable difference. A divorce suit follows, and they go 
forth among their friends, and are congratulated because they 
are " free." Investigation into the history of such jDcrsons, 
generally reveals the fact that when the sacred vow was taken 
they were poor; that their life had, for a long time, been a 
struggle against poverty. But fortune smiled upon them, qnd 
in a day — as has often been the case in California — they found 
themselves in the possession of wealth, and the pets of society. 
This sudden elevation to position and power is too much for 
them. They see about them the bright glow of well-kept youth 
and beauty, the gaiety and life of society, but in each other 
discover that years of toil and anxiety have left ineffaceable 
traces: a rudeness of manner, a general lack of vivacity, polish, 
and personal elegance, that even the veil of wealth cannot con- 
ceal. This was only revealed by the contrast, and although 
some of the defects may be remedied by the toilette artist, the 
milliner, and tailor, the awkwardness of their position is shown 


bv tbe absence of those little acquirements that only "use doth 
breed." Each becomes a source of worry to the other, and the 
harder they strive to overcome the imperfections they are con- 
stantly reminded of, the more awkward they appear, and as a 
lasL resort, resolve to seek more congenial companions, amoog 
the brilliant throng to whose society they are admitted by 
reason of their wealih. 

To accomplish the dissolution of the man^age tie is not a 
difficult matter when such is the desire. A glance at the morn- 
ing papers, shows numerous four-line advertisements of divoi'ce 
bureaus and divorce lawyers, who guarantee a legal decree in 
the " shortest possible time," on the " smallest grounds of dis- 
satisfaction," and " with no publicity whatever." Numerous 
witnesses are furnished specially for the occasion by these ne- 
farious tricksters. Any charge whatever can be proven, and 
the divorce is readily obtained. There are many unprincipled 
fellows engaged in the divorce business exclusively; and they 
are, perhaps, the most prosperous class of lawyers. Private 
detectives are furnished by them to shadow a husband or wife 
whose companion desires to obtain a divorce, and discover, if 
possible, some legitimate grounds upon which to base the pro- 
ceeding. If unsuccessful in one device, others are resorted to, 
until the end sought is gained, whether legitimately or other- 

A number of citizens in San Francisco, whose wealth is 
counted by millions, have been divorced from their wives; it 
seems, more for the opportunity of choosing a companion from 
the gay and blooming belles of upper-tendom, than because 
of family disagreement or troubles. The wives of rich men 
seldom sue for divorce, unless they are certain of a goodly life- 
competency being secured to them also; but among the poor 
and laboring class it is the wife oftener than the husband that 
makes complaint and seeks relief. The divorce records show 
that there are four women to one man applicant. 


It no doubt strikes the reader as a peculiar and rather awk- 
ward association of ideas, in combining under one heading and 
in one chapter, two subjects so dissimilar as " divorces" and 
" sudden deaths." It was more from accident than purpose, 
that such grouping occurred; but if by any suggestiveness the 


combination contains, any one should be deterred from com- 
mitting so grave a social crime as divorce, it will have been 
proven a happy accident. It is not always that sudden death 
follows so closely upon divorce, but if by chance or otherwise 
it should thus occur so frequently as to be looked upon as 
ominous and become a superstition, it would certainly do much 
to check the tide of family disruption. If the idea obtained 
with each, that he would possibly be the next pale passenger 
to Lone Mountain, their would be neither so many divorces 
nor so much of rascality and immorality as there is now. 

While paralytic strokes and attacks of apoplexy are, of late 
years, alarmingly common and fatal in the Eastern States, 
there is yet not that prevalence of diseases suddenly fatal to 
life that exists on the California coast. There the victim is 
generally one whose life pursuit has involved more than 
ordinary severe mental labor, while in California no such dis- 
tinction is observed. In San Francisco there are more sudden 
deaths in proportion to the number of the inhabitants than in 
any of the cities east of the Kocky Mountains. This is true of 
the towns and villages throughout the whole State — the ratio 
perhaps slightly increasing in the southern parts. 

All classes, conditions, and nationalities are included among 
the victims. The common laborer, the mechanic, merchant, 
and lawyer may be cut down without a moment's warning, even 
"in the blossom of their sins." On the street, at church, 
behind the counter, or at the gaming table, there is no exemp- 
tion. The afflicted to whom life is but a painful existence — a 
burden they would gladly drop — are seldom the chosen sub- 
jects of the swift-flying sickle; but the eye that sparkles with 
the full brilliancy of life, in a moment is glassy and expres- 
sionless; those who are blessed with health and strength, 
whose manner and look would betoken long years of active 
life to come, fall in the twinkling of an eye, under the stroke 
of this death-reaper. " They eat, drink and make merry," but 
before the morrow comes they are dead. 

It must not, however, be understood that this fatality pre- 
vails to such extent as to cause alarm to the living or to ren- 
der life unhapp}'. So many deaths from no apj^arent cause 
would naturally be remarked, especially in a country so ex- 
empt from epidemic and contagious diseases as California. 
Although the number that die suddenly is far in excess of the 


number of similar deaths in other cities, the rate of mortality 
is much smaller than in the most healthful Eastern localities. 

The causes of sudden death on this coast are not under- 
stood. The habit of life seems to have little to do with it, 
as there is no distinction as to business or pursuit. It is at- 
tributed to some climatic peculiarity, that has the effect of 
paralyzing the heart, and for which there is no preventive or 
remedy; though it is very possible that by observing regular 
habits in life and avoiding the excessive use of stimulants, of 
every kind, all might escape. 







FIGUEATIVELY speaking, San Francisco is an object of 
serious contention between land and water. However, 
Land, as yet, maintains the mastery in the struggle; but the 
arm that Ocean thrusts forth almost encircles the fair queen, 
leaving her but a point of terra firma upon which to plant her 
wave-washed feet, and from which, by one mighty effort, this 
jealous rival may yet draw her to his heaving bosom. Drop- 
ping the figure, the reality is discovered in the plain outlines 
of the Bay of San Francisco, that extends its length in irregu- 
lar dimensions many miles inland; and the hilly jjeninsula 
of the same name, that this encroachment of the ocean forms. 
This exploring disposition of the ocean, however, cuts off the 
city from the more attractive parts of the mainland, so that 
its inhabitants, like Moses of old, are only permitted to 
feast their vision upon the inviting prospect beyond, unless 
they accept the offers that are extended by the numerous 
ferry companies, whose boats are waiting to bear them over 
this Jordan that rolls between. 

Besides the many vessels that navigate the bay, carrying 
passengers and freight to all the towns and villages that are 
planted on its margin, there are four ferry lines, crossing more 
or less directly to the opposite shore. Of these, that which is 
by far the most important, is the Oakland and Alameda ferry, 
the last link in the great overland railway route, between the 
Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. After his rapid career down the 
slope of the Sierra Nevadas, and over the fertile plains of the 
Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys, slacking his impetuous 
speed only as he labors through the canons of the coast range, 
the iron horse comes weary and panting, though with a clamor 
of bells and oft-repeated shrieks that herald his approach. 


down to the extremity of long wharf, Oakland, where he 
halts; and the eager passengers that he has safely brought 
■with him, betake themselves to the ample decks and salon of 
the Oakland or Alameda. Thirty minutes thereafter, they are 
lost in the confusion and bustle on the streets of San Fran- 
cisco, or have distributed themselves among the hotels of the 
city. But the passengers going to and from the overland 
trains constitute a small proportion of the travel over this 
ferry line. Two trips only, of the forty-sis made daily, by the 
excellent steamers, Oakland and Alameda, are required for 
these; while the people passing and re-jDassing, besides, are 
numbered by the thousands. The foliage-sheltered city of 
Oakland, which, because of its vernal beauty has been called, 
by its biographer, the "Queen City of the Valleys," and be- 
cause of its home-like qualities, the "Bride of the Bay;" 
Oakland — and her sylvan twin sister, Alameda — lies just across 
the bay; and the daily travel over the ferry is mostly made up 
of her residents. 


"Before Oakland existed," says her faithful historian, "San 
Francisco had become the great centre of population and 
trade on the North Pacific Coast. Admirably situated for 
deejJ-sea and inland water traffic, wealth was attracted to her 
lap. This stimulated the enterprise of her people, and n.ade 
her what she is. Sacramento, Stockton, San Jose, Benicia, 
Yallejo, Sonom^ and Petaluma (to say nothing of numerous 
mountain towns which dot the map of Cahfornia), all acquired 
considerable importance before Oakland was heard of. 

"On New Year's day, 1851, the site of Oakland was only 
known as a part of the Peralta Rancho. Wild cattle roamed 
where now, surrounded by all that pertains to modern civiliza- 
tion, more than twenty thousand people are living. The sound of 
church organs and college bells now reverberates where, then, 
nothing but the bellowing of animals interrupted the stillness 
of nature. In the place of the old cattle trails are railroads 
and macadamized streets; and where the cattle lazily roamed, 
we now witness forty-six daily j)assenger, and numerous 
freight trains, rushing to and fro, propelled by the mighty 
power of steam. Even the wild flowers that once bedecked 
the surface of the earth, exist only by sufferance, and a culti- 
vated flora has usurped their place. 


"The situation of Oakland toward San Francisco is often 
compared with the situation of Brooklyn toward New York, 
and comparative deductions are made corresponding with the 
history of those eastern cities. Had Kew York been located 
at the end of a peninsula, jutting from the main land into the 
Atlantic Ocean, and had Brooklyn been located on the main 
land opposite, and enjoyed a climate as much more genial as 
that of Oakland compared with the climate of San Francisco, 
we opine the result there would have been different." 

The climate of Oakland is the same as that of San Fran- 
cisco, excej)t that it is greatly modified by the topography of 
the surrounding country, and the many trees that protect the 
town from the gales that meet no obstruction in passing over 
San Francisco. The thermometer indicates very nearly the 
same degrees of temperature at both places. 

From an elevation of thirty-eight feet above the sea, the 
land slopes in a gradual incline westward to the margin of the 
bay; while to the north and east it extends in gentle undula- 
tions to the foot hills of the Coast Range, which rise up a few 
miles beyond. 

Descriptive of the scenery, of both land and water, in and 
about Oakland, her biograj)her further says : 

' ' There are few places uj^on earth which are more inviting 
to those fond of out-door exercise, than Oakland and its vicin- 
ity. If it be true — as it unquestionably is — that the Bay of 
San Francisco is the finest and most picturesque in the world, 
not even excepting the Bay of Naples, and the magnificent har- 
bor of Rio Janeiro, it is no less true that the site of Oakland 
affords the most beautiful view of that Bay, and the most de- 
lightful of the valleys by which it is environed. Here, the 
Coast Range, generally so abrupt and rocky, recedes gradually 
into a vale, miles in width, and slojDes with a gentle declivity 
to the waters of the Bay, that bathe its borders with the health- 
inspiring ripples of the Ocean, just visible through the open- 
ing of the Golden Gate. Eastward, the summit of Mount 
Diablo presents the loftiest peak from San Diego to Shasta 
Butte. Westward, gleams the broad bosom of the Bay, bor- 
dered in the distance by the triple hills of San Francisco, the 
blue summits of the San Bruno Range, and the slumbering 
valleys of San Mateo. Northward, stretch the fruitful orchards 
of San Pablo, the green hills of Carquinez, and the fairy islets 


of Golden Rock, and the Sisters ; whilst southward, the old 
Mission of San Jose looms up in the distance like a glimpse of 
Aden; and the most fertile of hills, and dales, and plains, com- 
mingle in the view, assuring the spectator that no land upon 
the globe unites in itself blessings more varied or landscapes 
more enchanting than those which greet the eye from the 
flower - enameled plain of Alameda. 

''Here, are no toll-roads to check adventure and tax the 
pleasure-seeker with their oppressive exactions. There are no 
craggy precipices to climb, or soft morasses to cross ; but the 
country is intersected with highways attesting the genius of 
McAdam, and leveled like the thoroughfares of Holland. 

"Are you weary of city life, and require the mountain air to 
invigorate your frame ? Scale the summit of Mount Diablo ! 
Are you ill, and need the waters of old Ponce de Leon to re- 
animate you with the vigor of perpetual youth ? Go and bathe 
in the fountains of the old Mission San Jose ! Are you fond 
of sport? Shoulder your gun, and gather quail from the foot- 
hills, or rig your fishing-tackle and bait for smelt or silver-fins, 
for trout or perch, off the end of our piers, or in the shady 
Hooks of the San Leandro ! Are you a lover of nature ? Mount 
your horse, and thread the grounds of the State University ! 
Visit the gems of the foothill farms ! Climb the gentle acclivi- 
ties of the Coast Range, and, turning suddenly in the saddle, 
cast your eye on the slumbering landscape at your feet ! Where 
upon the broad earth can your gaze meet with so enchanting 
a spectacle? Vineyard, orchard, and garden; fountain, bay, 
and ocean ; plain, meadow, and mountain, blend in a unison 
BO perfect that you feel there can be no spot where nature pre- 
sents greater inducements for homes, than the gorgeous queen 
of the valleys, the beautiful bride of the Bay, the flourishing 
city of Oakland." 

The schools of Oakland are excellent. Many private semi- 
naries are maintained, which, because of their superior educa- 
tional facilities, the healthfulness of the climate, and the re- 
fined society of Oakland, are much patronized by residents of 
the State, remote from "the Bay," as well as by San Francis- 
cans. The University of California is also in its northern sub- 
urbs; while, a few miles to the southeast, is Mills' Institute, or 
Female Seminary, considered one of the best educational insti- 
tutions in the State. The Oakland Military Academy, founded 


in 1865, is another excellent institution, where the Californian 
youth may be educated not only in those things that pertain to 
civil life, but also in the arts of war. It is provided with mus- 
kets and other military equipments, and has a large armory. 
It is well patronized, and the discipline is good. 

All the different church denominations are represented, 
some of the church buildings being veiy commodious and 

There are two superior hotel buildings — the Grand Central, 
in Oakland proper, and Tubbs' famous hotel in Brooklyn. 
(Brooklyn is a part and parcel of Oakland; but because of it 
being cut off from the main pai-t of the city by a slough of 
the bay, it aspires to be knovvn by the foregoing pretentious 
name. It is not unfrequently called East Oakland, as well.) 
Both of these caravansaries are thronged with city-folk during 
the summer months, who repair thither to be rid of the bustle 
of the city, as well as to escape the annoyance the summer 
wind and fog occasions. These are delightful resorts for rec- 

Alameda is, likewise, a beautiful residence town, being two 
miles to the south of Oakland, beyond what is known as San 
Antonio Creek. "What we have said of Oakland, is also ap- 
plicable to Alameda, excej)t that being the younger, it has not 
so many improvements as its sister city. 

Both of these jjlaces are famous for their fruit and floral 
products — though with the rapid increase of poptilation, the 
former luxury is fast giving way. ^ Land has become too val- 
uable for building lots, to be held and cultivated for the tree 
and vine. Orchards are therefore abandoned, or cut down, 
and the land they cumbered is given over to the cottage tene- 
ment-house, as a more profitable occupant. 

As places for family residence, Oakland and Alameda are 
unsurpassed in California; and there are few more lovely abid- 
ing places on the face of the continent. Indeed, it would 
seem that any one ought to be happy and perfectly content, if 
he is the fortunate possessor of a pleasantly situated home in 
Oakland or Alameda, with a sufficient income to maintain it 
properly. He has a beautiful city; a climate which, for health- 
fulness and mildness at all seasons, is all he could wish; a 
community whose members are exceptionally refined and intel- 
ligent, rendering his social advantages suj)erior; churches and 


schools, and, besides, what is of great importance to the en- 
terprising citizens of to-day, he is, as it were, but a step from 
a thriving metropolis, where all the business, intelligence and 
refinement, of a vast country centers. An invigorating voy- 
age of thirty minutes, is all that intervenes between San Fran- 
cisco and Oakland. 

Because of these superior advantages, Oakland and Alameda 
are rapidly filling up with settlers, who go there to build up 
homes for their families, and at the same time pursue their 
business occupations in San Francisco. Although, for the 
reason that the bay intervenes. between the mainland and San 
Francisco, Oakland is of necessity the terminus of the rail- 
road system of the Pacific Coast, her business is only of local 
importance. She is still but a way-station for the passengers 
and freight that pour in from overland and the interior. The 
water that rolls between the " bumping-post " where the iron 
horse must halt, and the " City at the Golden Gate," is virtu- 
ally bridged by the stanch steamers that are forever busy, 
crossing and re-crossing on its bosom. 

San Francisco is the office, store and workshop, while Oak- 
land and Alameda are the homes of the many laborers, me- 
chanics, business men and capitalists who daily cross upon the 


The number of passengers crossing the Oakland and Ala- 
naeda ferry daily, may be safely estimated at eight thousand. 
Many of them, of course, are transient persons, who are per- 
haj)S visiting the opposite side for the first time. Others, 
again, make semi-weekly and weekly trips, but the greater 
number is composed of those who reside in Oakland and Ala- 
meda, and cross over to the city of mornings, returning again 
at night. 

The early morning boats are thronged with laborers and 
mechanics, who, with lunch baskets or pails at their feet, and 
pipes in their mouths, lean comfortably back in the seats and 
xead the morning paper; thus improving their minds and rest- 
ing their bodies, while at the same time they are being carried 
rapidly to their places of labor. This is one superiority over 
street-car travel, for that man must be a persistent book-worm 
indeed, who can intelligently read either book or paper in a 
San Francisco street-car, during the morning or evening trips. 


He is certainly fortunate if he succeeds in securing standing 
room for bis six and a quarter cents fare, and the idea of his 
finding space to open out his paper, is out of the question. 

Upon the next boats are seen many j^outhful faces of both 
sexes. Among these are clerks, bookkeepers and salesmen, 
and young women engaged in various capacities in the shops, 
stores and factories of the city. Following these, money 
brokers and brokers' clerks, bank employees and merchants, 
are observed, while later come the gentlemen and ladies of 
elegant leisure, heavy capitalists, landed j)roprietors, and bank- 
ers; with not a few of the Oaklanders and Alamedans who are 
off to the city on a shopping tour. 

A characteristic feature of the human throng upon the early 
morning boats going from the city, are the Chinese vegetable 
venders with their baskets and poles. They throng the lower 
deck in such numbers that one must needs have no fear of 
bumjDS and jolts, who undertakes to j)ass in among them. 
They are the successful competitors of the vegetable markets 
of the suburban cities, inasmuch as they sell cheaper, and 
carrj' their whole stock to the doors of the residents, so that 
the housekeeper may examine the full variety without so much 
as passing beyond her threshold. 

The evening boats returning from the city present much the 
same diversity according to the hour, as is observed at the 
morning trips — only the order is reversed. Those that are first 
shall be last, and the last shall be first, is here exemplified. 
The army of shoppers, have done their bartering, and are re- 
turning early; and likewise have the capitalists, bankers, and 
wealthy brokers, transacted their day's business and now re- 
turn to an early dinner. The clerks, bookkeepers, salesmen, 
and shop-girls, follow later; and last of all come the mechan- 
ics and laborers, who do not look so fresh and vigorous as they 
appeared at the morning trip. Their soiled hands and dusty 
or grimy faces show that they have toiled half a score of hours 
since they sat so comfortably reading the morning paper. 

The night passengers are the pleasure seekers, who are full 
of life and gaiety. They are on the way to the theatres and 
public places of amusement, or to some of the many private 
parties and balls where there will be much merry-making, even 
into the morning hours. But those who tarry past the second 
quarter-stroke of eleven, must seek a shelter iu the city for the 


balance of the night; for ere the midnight hour has struck the 
last boat has crossed the ferry. 


The arrival of the boat bearing the overland passengers, who 
have just quit their dusty train on the other side, is, no doubt, 
an epoch in the lives of many persons, who for the first time 
are gazing from the deck of the steamer, upon that San Fran- 
cisco they had heard and read so much about. The reflective 
person, perhaps, recalls the stories he has heard of this city 
when she was j)assing through the exciting stages of develop- 
ment during her golden days. The primitive streets lined on 
either side with rude tenements of wood and canvas as Avere 
witnessed in the latter days of '49, had many times been pic- 
tured in his imagination; and now as he traces the lines of 
comely structures far up over the hills or along the valleys, so 
compact as to appear in the distance, almost as a single wide- 
sj)reading edifice — he notes the contrast. This, doubtless, re- 
vives in his mind, the tales that were truly told him years ago, 
of the ordeals that those passed through who laid the founda- 
tion of the solid improvements that are now spread out before 
him. He traces the important events in the history of this 
young city, from its earlier existence to the present. First of 
these may be, the distress and turmoil that followed, ujDon the 
announcement of the gold discoveries in California, when San 
Francisco was so overcrowded with restless human life that 
shelter and sometimes food was scarcely provided for the 
people, and many perished from exposure and want. Then 
follow quickly in this imaginarj' histoi'ical panorama the suc- 
cessive " great" fires, that would in a single night lick up the 
half of the fragile habitations in that pretentious San Francisco 
of early times, liberally interspersed with scenes of riot, blood 
and carnage. 

Now, in the retrospective scene, he eagerly gazes upon the 
excited throngs that sway in the streets, hurrying hither and 
thither; and the gleam of steel, and the occasional flashes ac- 
companied by sharp reports, tell him that the picture before 
him represents the city of San Francisco during the periods of 
strife between crime and justice, when the vigilantes Avere purg- 
ing the city. 

Why does he look so intently at yonder point in the north- 


erly part of the city ? It is hardly possible that he has heard 
of Telegraph Hill, and has now intuitively recognized it! But, 
thither his gaze is directed, and for the benefit of the occasion 
he imbibes the spirit of the San Francisco joioneer, so that the 
kindly feelings may be stirred within him, that a contempla- 
tion of this prominent landmark revives, in those who were 
among the early j)opulation that christened the spot and cre- 
ated for it an historical importance. He disrobes it of the 
mantle of improvements that has gradually been woven over it, 
until its rugged and irregular surface has almost entirely dis- 
appeared, and again clothes it in the shaggy garb of chapparal 
that it wore in the long ago when, as tradition tells us, it stood 
sentinel guard between lake and sea — the briny billows of the 
Pacific tossing theii- spray against its westerly base, while the 
transparent ripplets of a fresh-water lake were playing on its 
easterly margin. As the scene moves along into the nearer 
past, the first footprints of civilized man indistinctly aj)pear; 
and now there is seen a few straggling tenement stnictures in- 
dicating that the first glimmering rays of the " Star of Empire " 
have glanced across the summit of the mountains that have for 
a long time impeded its westward march, and are j^enetrating 
the fog-cloud that hovers about the peninsula of San Fran- 

Another change of the scenery, reveals a broad cluster of 
houses, and as the canvas moves along he discovers that the 
valleys and sidehills of the point of the peninsula are dotted 
thick, with human habitations. A busy city lies before him, 
the improvements of which, are creej)ing slowly up the accliv- 
ity of Telegraph Hill. Upon its topmost peak the signal pole 
is reared, the long arms of which are wide extended — telling 
that a sail has apjDeared without the Golden Gate. 

Again the scene is shifted. The signal has disappeared. 
This scene is like unto the present reality. There are many 
comely buildings, covering the whole of the abrupt southern 
slope, extending to the very summit where the signal before, 
stood alone. 

Before the reverie is broken he takes a brief prospective 
glance at this memorable hill, and beholds in the near future, 
on the highest point, in the midst of a well-kej)t jiark, a 
massive monument commemorative of the founding of the 
modern San Francisco. The branches of large forest trees. 


"bend before the stiff and steady gale, and fleck tlie glistening 
pile with sunshine and shadow — bump ! the steamer has 
touched the pier and the command " all ashore," has awakened 
our dreamer from his contemplations, to the realities of life, 
the most convincing evidence of which is seen and heard as 
lie passes up the wharf between the lines of hotel-runners, 
hackmen, and expressmen, that have gathered at the landing, 
to "welcome" the overland passengers. And they do it with 
right good will, for they shout and yell, and clamor, and 
quarrel, in the wildest manner. If there was a riot in prog- 
ress, the noise and confusion would not be greater. Inexperi- 
enced timid travelers, draw back from this howling mob as 
if they had fears for their bodily safety, in passing through. 
Such conduct does not seem to be in harmony with the princi- 
ples of independent business. These hotel solicitors not un- 
frequently are boisterous in the extreme, and occasionally 
undertake to secure patrons by sheer force. A business can- 
not legitimately thrive that depends upon forced patronage, 
and the hotels that employ such rude solicitors ought to be 
ignored by the public. Travelers, as a rule, decide before 
arriving at a place, what public house they will stop at, and 
all the inducements that the runner may name, in his yells 
and shouts, does not generally change their purpose. 


Ferry steamers make several trips, daily, between the city 
and San Rafael, Saucelito, and San Quentin. These villages 
are situated across the bay in a northerly direction from San 
Francisco, varying in distance from four to fourteen miles. 

San Rafael is a charming residence spot, and is a favorite 
resort for holiday and Sunday picnic parties. Many wealthy 
business men of San Francisco have elegant private resi- 
dences there. It is the county seat of Marin county, the old 
mission building, which was established in 1817, being used 
for a courthouse. 

The climate is remarkably mild and salubrious. The village 
is protected from the chill ocean winds by a high mountain 
xange, in which the most prominent peak is Mt. Tamalpais, 
made classic by both pen and brush. The ascent of Tamalpais 
constitutes a favorite jaunt for San Franciscans. It is a 
tedious exercise, but the weariness it occasions is wholesome. 


and the view from the summit compensates the toui-ist by its 

Saucelito, four miles distant from the city, also across the 
bay in a northerly direction, is a beautiful suburban ^^llage, 
set down among the Marin hills, possessing a mild climate and 
picturesque natural surroundings. It is frequently visited by 
excursion parties. 

San Quentin Point is the landing place for the steam feny- 
boats that carry passengers en route to San Eafael a few miles 
beyond. It is of interest only because of the State's Prison 
being located there. The prison buildings occupy a slight 
elevation a short distance from the landing, and are con- 
spicuous objects to passengers on board passing steamers. 
The buildings of the prison, and the shops and factories con- 
nected therewith for the purpose of utilizing convict labor, 
give San Quentin the appearance of a considerable town. 
But it has not many residents, except those connected one 
way or another with the management of the institution. The 
scenery in the vicinity is remarkably fine, and serves, no doubt, 
as a sort of antidote to the melancholy feelings that imprison- 
ment begets. 






THE San Francisco Mint was, until the j^assage of the 
Coinage Act of 1873, but a branch of the parent estab- 
lishment at Philadelphia. By this Act it was placed on an 
independent basis. It had, however, attained greater import- 
ance than the PhiladeljDhia Mint previous to this, and now 
lakes the rank of the foremost in the United States. Located 
at the central depot of all the gold and silver products of the 
Pacific Coast, it will no doubt maintain its prestige in the 

The "Old" Mint, which stands near the corner of Commer- 
cial and Montgomery streets, was of very limited capacity 
and greatly restricted the business that would have been done 
liad there been more facilities. But the existence of this un- 
satisfactory establishment led to the erection of the "New" 
Mint, which, situation, building and machinery being con- 
sidered, would be difficult to surpass. 

The "New" Mint occupies the northwest corner of Mission 
and Fifth streets. It is two full-stories in hight, with lofty 
basement underneath, and covers an area one hundred and 
sixty by two hundred and seventeen feet. It is in form a 
hollow parallelogram and stands on a concrete foundation 
five feet deep. The building is most unique in outline. It 
is built in the Doric style of architecture. The walls are of 
brick, faced with a beautiful blue-grey sand-stone twelve 
inches thick. A portico in front, supported by six fluted 
columns, gives grandeur and beauty to the structure. The 
whole finish, external and internal, is complete in every 
detail. The interior woodwork is mostly of golden mahogany, 
and is artistically executed. The machinery is massive and 
fine and is wonderfully accurate in its workings. 


The operations necessary in conducting the Mint are di- 
vided into four dejDartments : The General Department, under 
the direct supervision of the Superintendent, in which the 
services of more than forty persons are required; the Assay 
Department, under the Assayer, requiring about fifteen j^er- 
sons; the Melter and E-efiner's Department, in which twenty- 
five to thirty persons are employed, and the Coinei"'s De- 
partment, which is conducted by the Coiner, with the aid of 
some sixty jDersons — making a total of about one hundred 
and fifty persons engaged in various capacities in the Mint. 
In the latter department there are employed about fifty 

The total coinage per annum averages something more 
than twenty million dollars. Of this amount, the propor- 
tion of silver is about one eighth, to seven eighths of gold. 

Visitors are admitted daily from nine to twelve o'clock, 
in the morning. 


The building used conjointly as Post-office and Custom 
House fronts on Washington and Battery Streets. It is an 
old, dilapidated structure, much weather-beaten, and is cer- 
tainly no credit to Uncle Sam's taste. The Post-office is sand- 
wiched in between the basement and upper story, and in its 
neatest dress is anything but attractive. The strictness ob- 
served to economize all available space might be pardonable in 
the event of a general renovation of the whole building. When 
the fact is considered, that the San Francisco Post-office takes 
the rank of the third in importance in the United States, it 
would seem proper, and just to the city of San Francisco, to 
speedily provide more commodious apartments. 

The San Francisco Post-office is the great receiving and 
distributing office for the Pacific Coast. It transmits overland 
to the Eastern States four thousand letters daily, and distrib- 
utes as many that are received on the same route. Through- 
out the State and coast the distribution averages about twenty- 
five thousand daily. Sis thousand a month are forwarded to 
China and Japan ; five thousand to Australia ; to Central and 
South America, four thousand, and to the Sandwich Islands, 
Alaska and British America, six thousand. About the same 
number are received from these different places. 


The Dead Letter Office at Washington gets a goodly share 
of patronage from San Francisco — two hundred dead letters 
being forwarded thither daily. 

The newspaper mails are enormous. There are hundreds 
upon hundreds of tons distributed from this office annually. 
Then there are the registered letters and money orders, that 
are quite a business of themselves. 

The surplus cash from other offices on the coast flows into 
the San Francisco office at the rate of twenty thousand dollars 
per week ; and ten thousand dollars a month is, in turn, dis- 
tributed among these, to enable them to cash their money or- 
ders. Thirty-five thousand dollars worth of stamps are sold 

A small army of employees are required to transact all this 
business. Forty or fifty are engaged in-doors ; over thirty act 
in the capacities of postal clerks, stage agents, etc., and forty 
are employed as carriers and collectors. The system of iron 
postal boxes, placed at convenient intervals throughout the 
city, is greatly appreciated by the citizens, and is conducted 


The Custom House — as previously stated — comprises the 
basement and upper story of the Post-office building. It is 
three blocks distant from the water front, is inconvenient for 
the officers as well as for merchants, and is not nearly roomy 
enough. Being a great source of revenue to the Federal 
Government ought certainly to entitle the port of San Fran- 
cisco to a better and more convenient building for this pur- 

The arrivals of vessels, according to the Custom House 
officers' report, average about forty-five hundred, with a ton- 
nage exceeding one million and a half, per annum. The total 
value of exports per year, excluding treasure, is twenty-five 
million dollars. 

In the United States Appraisers' Store, which is now being 
pushed forward rapidly, there is perhaps some compensation 
for the shabby building used as Post-office and Custom 
House. This building is directly west of the Post-office 
building, and, when complete, will be an ornament of strength 
and beauty to the architecture of the city. It covers an area 


of two hundred and sixty-five, by one hundred and twenty-six, 
feet, and will be three stories high — having underneath a 
lofty and well-arranged basement. 

The United States Court will occupy the top floors, and 
the first floor and basement will be used for Appraisers' 

In the various departments of the Custom House there are 
a large number of employees. 






THE Jews are numerous in San Francisco. A fair estimate 
places the number at twenty thousand. As citizens, they 
are very valuable to the communit3^ There is not that hard 
line of distinction between them and the Christian population 
that is so generally apparent elsewhere. In California, 
Catholic and Protestant, Jew and Gentile, all seem to have 
united in the one effort of establishing a civilization on a 
broad and liberal foundation, the rules of which would not 
restrict in any way the liberties of any, so long as they 
observed the acknowledged principles of right. There is a 
more liberal religious sentiment among all sects in San Fran- 
cisco than obtains in most American cities. The Jews, who 
have, since the foundation of their faith was first laid, been 
characteiized by their retired isolation from those holding 
different beliefs, are conforming more to modern thought, 
and, in San Francisco, mingle to a considerable extent 
with the Christian sects. 

In commercial matters they are leaders. In any business 
pursuit involving traffic, they are, as a class, more successful 
than those who reject their faith. There is more j)overty 
among them than in New York; yet, taken as a whole, 
they own more real estate, and command more wealth, 
comparatively, than in any city in the United States. Ten 
members of the Temple Emanu-El — the principal synagogue 
in the city — have an aggregate wealth of forty-five millions. 

They are leaders in, and control, to a great extent, the 
principal mercantile businesses. The clothing trade — here as 
elsewhere — is monopolized by them, and the principal dry- 
goods houses, and crockery and jewelry establishments, 
belong to Jews. In the manufacturing industries they have 


control of the slioe and soap factories, and the woolen 
mills. The manufacture of woolen goods has been very 
unsuccessful, having changed hands several times, -and 
until it passed into the Jews' control had not reached a 
solution. Under their management it is assuming important 
proportions. They are also largely interested in the grain 
trade of the coast, and the Alaskan fur trade. 

As a class they congregate in cities and engage in the 
mercantile and lighter mechanical trades seldom, if ever, de- 
voting their attention to agricultural pursuits. They are 
therefore educated to business, each succeeding generation 
profiting by the experience of the preceding. They are frugal 
and industrious, and seldom fail to gradually accumulate cajj- 
ital when once established in a business, however small the 
beginning may be. Few of them have any political aspira- 
tions, and it is a rare occurrence to find them occupying any 
official position, either municipal or State. Yet they take a 
lively interest in polities, and seem to hold as decided opinions 
regarding political issues as the ordinary American-born citi- 
zen. It is a noteworthy fact that there are a less number of 
Jews arraigned before the criminal tribunals of the city than 
of any other class of citizens. In no instance has a Jew been 
before the courts of San Francisco to answer for the crime of 
murder. When they are subjects of prosecution it is generally 
a petty charge that is brought against them — some small theft 
or swindle, for the indulgence in which the lower-class Jews 
are characterized. 

Down along the water-front and on some of the disreputable 
streets may be found an occasional Fagin, but the higher 
class dealers bear honorable business reputations. 

From this class of our population the American people may 
learn a lesson in temperance. In fact, all the foreign j^opula- 
tion, excepting the Irish, are not so much given to drunken- 
ness as are our purely native Americans. The Jews in par- 
ticular, whether French or Russian, English or German, are 
very temperate in their habits. They are not, however, of 
the "total abstinence ilk," whose motto is "touch not, taste 
not, handle not," but from childhood to old age partake freely 
of any of the alcoholic drinks their taste may favor. But 
they do not drink to excess, neither do they use "mixed 


They are a very prolific race, and the sacredness in which 
the family relation is held by the Jewish people furnishes an 
example worthy to be imitated in these days of social demoral- 


The Congregation Emanu-El, the oldest Jewish society in 
the city, was organized in 1851. In 1866 it erected a syna- 
gogue at a cost of nearly two hundred thousand dollars. This 
temple occujDies a central location, on Sutter street, and is 
the handsomest edifice of the kind in the city. It is very 
capacious, and its internal finish is elegant and appropriate. 
This congregation has for a long time been presided over by 
Dr. Elkan Cohn, a Eabbi of great intelligence, and more 
liberal in his religious opinions than is usual among the 
Jewish teachers. Previous to the erection of the Temple 
Emanu-El, he had endeavored to introduce various reforms in 
his teachings, by discarding many of the minor rites and cere- 
monies that have so long been clung to with remarkable 
tenacity by this people, and adapting their worship and ob- 
servances to the spirit of the age. 

This experiment, however, was attended with disaster, many 
of the congregation becoming dissatisfied and quitting his 
charge. But to-day it is the wealthiest Jewish society in the 
city, and is in every way prosperous. A school for the re- 
ligious instruction of the youth, is conducted in the basement, 
and the attendance of children is very numerous. 

The seceders, or dissatisfied members from Dr. Cohn's con- 
gregation, organized the Congregation Ohabai Shalome, and 
in 1865 erected the Mason Street Temple, which is scarcely 
inferior in elegance to the Temple Emanu-El. The mem- 
bership of this society is large, and the Kabbi, Dr. Bettelheim, 
is a veiy able and popular minister. Although, at its organ- 
ization the congregation was radically orthodox, its belief has 
undergone sufficient modifications to be yclept by the other 
societies as "orthodox in kid gloves." 

There are three other synagogues in San Francisco; Sherith 
Israel, Beth Israel, and Shaarey Tzedek. The membership of 
these is composed principally of Russian and Polish Jews, 
while of the two former congregations, the German, French 
and English nationalities predominate. The salaries paid to 
the Rabbis range from two to six thousand dollars a year. 


The cantor at tlie principal synagogues receives three hundred 
and fifty dollars per month. 

These congregations maintain five benevolent societies and 
the ladies have numerous organizations for special beneficent 
objects. The different days for feasting or fasting and all 
times set apart for religious observance are scrupulously kept 
by the devout. During seasons of more than ordinary festivity 
and rejoicing, there is much gaiety among this class of the 
popvdation. All business pursuits are temporarily abandoned 
and every one gives fuU attention to pleasure and social enjoy- 

The Jews are apparently a happy people, and although they 
may look forward with some anxiety to the time when their 
roving shall cease, and they shall be gathered as one family 
into the Promised Land, they yet seem contented with their 
lot, no doubt resting serenely in the faith that they are ' ' the 
chosen people of the Lord." Though they mingle with other 
races more than was their custom in "ancient days," the 
prophecy that " Israel shall dwell alone," is yet in fulfillment. 
They are His peculiar people. 








SWINDLERS of every class are numerous iu all cities wliere 
business is lively. A thrifty community is as essential to 
their success as to any legitimate pursuit. Hence San Fran- 
cisco has been a favorite resort for blackmailers and confidence 

To be a successful blackmailer, requires considerable genius. 
Self-control, tact, and shrewdness, are qualifications that are 
especially needed, — as much so, perhaps, as to bo a detective. 
Blackmailers do not go blindly to work, but choose their vic- 
tim and mature their plans with as much deliberation as if a 
bank robbery was the deed anticipated. 

Perhaps the meanest phase of blackmailing that is jsractised 
to any considerable extent, is that engaged iu by newspapers. 
Of course there is not a newspaper in the city but would dis- 
claim any act of this nature, for do they not all labor for the 
" interests " and "welfare" of the country and people? Do 
they not sacrifice " private prejudices and opinions," for the 
public " good " in order that no shadow of " selfish interest" 
may fall upon their " independent and liberal course " to mar 
its good eftects ? Aye. So tliexj say. 

" How much will you give me if I Avill write you up ? " or "If 
you don't give us an advertisement we'll give you a notice? " are 
questions (perhaps stated indirectly and variously modified) 
propounded by newspaper representatives to clergymen, poli- 
ticians and men engaged in all kinds of business. Now, there 
are few persons in any public capacity but have, at some time 
in their lives, made grievous mistakes; and many have been 
guilty of various irregularities — sometimes of disreputable con- 
duct and numerous paltry things, that if publicly knov/n would 


be a discredit, and possibly injure their business or professional 
reputation. This is the leverage that a blackmailer uses on 
them, and since anything in print carries more weight than 
a mere mmor, the newspaper has a most favorable opportunity 
to draw the richest blood. 

There is not one intelligent person who will read this, but 
can recall some instance where a newspaper has practiced this 
art upon some person, or the general public. Blackmailing 
by the newspapers is practiced both negatively and positively 
— by not noticing that which is meritorious and worthy in a 
person or firm, or by alluding to them (whether worthy of 
notice or not) in a derogatory style, simply because such per- 
son or firm has not seen fit to patronize the newspaper. Men 
have established enterprises in San Francisco that have been 
of great public benefit, and struggled along year after year 
without a single gratuitous word of encouragement to them in 
any of the city journals; not because they were overlooked 
(for there is no more prying class of persons than the report- 
ers and solicitors for the newspapers), but because they did not 
advertise. So mercenary are most of the newspaper proprie- 
tors to-day, that the Devil himself would receive a highly 
laudatoiy notice if he would divide with them his ill-gotten 
spoils, while the Lord from heaven might pass by unnoticed 
unless he would make over a quit-claim deed to a sufficient 
superficial area of the gold-paved streets of the New Jerusa- 

Other blackmailers are those who, having learned something 
detrimental to the character of a person — generally of high 
standing in society — threaten to circulate it among his friends 
unless he will pay them to keep quiet. They are usually suc- 
cessful in obtaining their "hush" money, and are sure to call 
again for another installment. Theirs is a note that time does 
not outlaw, a draft seldom dishonored. 


One of the wiliest blackmailers that has visited San Fran- 
cisco, was busily playing his game in the latter part of 1875. 
He operated mostly among persons of wealth and high social 
and official positions. Upon arrival in the city, he represented 
himself as agent of a London and New York publishing com- 
pany, and pretended that his business in San Francisco was to 


establish a branch house, to be known as the London and San 
Francisco Publishing Company, 

He had the manner and intelligence of a perfect gentleman, 
and besides, manifested wonderful shrewdness. He went so 
far in the matter of establishing the branch house, as to have 
the name of the business, "London & San Francisco Publish- 
ing Company," printed upon the cards, envelopes, and letter 
paper that he used, and secured desk-room in one of the 
prominent j)rintiug establishments in the city. He then went 
about the book-making business in a manner that would indi- 
cate he had experience, in that particular line of publishing, 
at least. With remarkable foresight he saw the necessity of 
publishing a work to be entitled "Representative Men of San 
Francisco,'' which would contain brief biographical sketches 
of the more prominent and wealthier citizens. He therefore 
straightway began its preparation. To whomsoever he ap- 
plied for data, he represented that the woi'k would possess 
not only the important history of San Francisco's honorable 
men, but great literary merit as well. He did not forget to 
mention also, that the expense of preparing such a book would 
necessarily be great, and inasmuch as it was to be a local work, 
it would not likely enjoy a large sale, and hence it would be 
advisable that each person whose biography it contained, 
should agree to take a large number of copies, or pay a small 
amount for having the sketch published. Furthermore, it was 
his intention to secure magnificent steel engraved portraits to 
accomj)any each biography; and the book without doubt would 
be the finest work of its character that ever passed through 
the jaws of the press. 

His tongue was so smooth, his tones so bland, his words so 
appropriate, and his countenance so frank, that he seldom 
failed in convincing his victims that "it was just the thing," 
and deserved to be patronized. As a proof of their good faith 
in such a declaration, he had them sign a contract, and per- 
haps advance him a few dollars. Time passed on, and it is 
possible that each person who had thus been won by flattery, 
was anxiously waiting to see himself in print, occupying an 
important position in the history of rejjresentative San Fran- 

By some means, this enterprising biographer obtained the 
unbound sheets of a book called "Representative Men of the 


Pacific," that had been published a few years previous, but 
had proved unsalable, and much of the edition remained with 
the publisher. Out of this he chose such biographies as would 
be appropriate for hia worii, and adding his fresh ones thereto, 
soon jDroduced a considerable volume. 

Instead of the steel engravings, that were to be in the book, 
he had secured a number of photographs — vising, however, a 
few of the old engravings that had appeared in the former 
work. He then secured a number of assistants, and at once 
began the delivery of his work — collecting his bills ao the same 
time. The party who delivered the books was instructed to 
show only the new part, and thereby prevent the subscribers 
from detecting the fraud. Some only examined the sketch of 
themselves, and after expressing dissatisfaction at the substi- 
tution of a photograph for a steel engraving "in the highest 
style of the art," paid the money, and were troubled no more; 
others were quick to see the deception, and stoutly protested 
against being thus imposed upon — but by persistent dogging, 
and threats of legal process, they reluctantly paid the full 
amount, or were induced to compromise the matter by a liberal 
payment. But before the business had been fully set Lied, a 
gentleman stopping at one of the hotels had been apprised of 
the matter, and at once recognized the brilliant biographer as 
a notorious blackmailer, who had successfully played a similar 
game in some of the eastern cities. The reporters on the city 
dailies worked up the case, and soon a complete expose of the 
v^hole proceeding was made. This, however, was not sufficient 
to make him immediately abandon his j)roject. He continued 
persistently his dunning threats, and even instituted suit against 
a number of the wealthiest citizens in the city, claiming sums 
from each, vaiying from five hundred to three thousand dol- 
lars. A detective was engaged to investigate the matter, and 
obtain evidence against him ; and when the day of trial had 
come, there was no plaintiff to be found. The suits were dis- 
missed, and the wily Frederick Greer, as he styled himseK, 
had quit this " city by the western sea." 

He has recently been plying the same trade in the East, and 
has so aroused those whom he sought to victimize, that it is 
very probable he will have for his study, in the future, the 
bai-e walls of some State bmlding, set apart for such eccentric 
characters. It is also very probable that the "representative 


San Franciscans," who were his victims, will not be so anxious 
to have their "good deeds" handed down to posterity by the 
free use of type and ink, when the next biographer seeks to 
thus perpetuate their names. 


"While standing on the corner of Market and Kearny 
Streets, a few months ago, I was accosted by an acquaintance 
— a very respectable married man. He informed me that he 
had just got out of a * bad scrape,' but it had cost him $150 
and a gold watch. 

"Said he: 'About an hour ago, on Market Street, an 
elegantly-dressed lady stepped out of the dry goods store of 
Gleason & Fell, during a brisk shower, and asked me if I 
would be so kind as to give her shelter under my lunbrella, as 
far as her house, which was close by, I politely accompanied 
her home. She kindly invited, and finally induced, me to 
enter until the rain ceased. She took me into a bed-room, 
and threw her arms around me in a very affectionate way. At 
this crisis, a man rushed into the room in a frantic manner, 
saying : ' My God ! can it be possible that my wife has got a 
lover? Oh, God! what shall I do? My poor children; oh ! 
such disgrace,' and would not listen to the explanation that I 
wanted to make. The woman played her part by wringing 
her hands and crying, while her husband, or paramour, had 
locked the door, and kept going on like a madman; saying, a 
million dollars would not pay him for this discovery. But I 
finally compromised the matter with him by giving him my 
watch and one hundred and fifty dollars, he promising to keep 
the matter quiet.' 

"I was much amused when he told me that he felt so sorry 
for the woman. I told him that it was all a play to get his 
money, and begged of him to go to the City Hall and make 
complaint, so that I could arrest them; but I could not induce 
him to do so. He said that he would not have his wife hear 
of it for all the watches in the world; and if the case was 
brought into court she would hear all about it. 

" I was determined to know more about this splendid pair, 
and requested him to show me the house. I called there in 
the evening. An old Dutch woman came to the door. I 


asked lier if iLo lady was in, and slie informed me that she 
was the only one who occupied the premises. I secured a 
room on the opposite side of the street; and after watching 
for two nights and one day, I was rewarded by seeing the 
handsome couple enter. I followed them in at once, and 
demanded of them the watch and money taken from my friend. 
They Loth at first indignantly denied all knowledge of the 
affair, but after a pretty severe bluff they disgorged; also the 
j^rice of the room on the other side of the street." 

" I know a lady in this city, the wife of a wealthy merchant, 
who was decoyed into an assignation house, innocently, by a 
scoundrel who had professed great friendship for her, but who 
then threatened to inform her husband where he had seen her, 
unless she paid him a certain sum of money. She did so, 
thinking to get rid of him, as he promised not to see her 
again. But oh, how much she was deceived! For four years 
he made her pay him not less than twenty-five dollars per 
week, and sometimes larger sums. She became so much 
annoyed by him that she sent a note to me, requesting an 
interview. I saw her, and a truly pitiful story she told me. 
I set (1 traj), and he fell into it nicely. But I could not induce 
her to jorosecute him, Tor,' says she, 'who will believe me 
when I say that I did not know the character of the house 
when I went there?' I did not let him know that she would 
not prosecute, but gave him a chance to save himself, as he 
supposed, by leaving the State, which he did, and was very 
glad to do so." 

"A certain well-known lawyer of this city, was invited to 
call on a lady who had a beautiful and lovely young daughter. 
The invitation was accepted, and the visits repeated until the 
parties became quite familiar. The daughter and lawyer were 
frequently left to themselves in the pax'lor. During one of 
the visits (according to instruction from her mother) the young 
lady made improper advances. The lawyer could not I'esist, 
and just at the climax of their guilt, the mother rushed into 
the room and discovered their crime. Then there was a 'scene' 
which can better be imagined than described. The lawyer 
gave the mother a check for a thousand dollars, and was glad 
to get off with that. He went home, pondered over it, and 


concluded, rightly too, that it was a 'job' to get money. He 
got up early next morning, went to the bank, stoj)ped the pay- 
ment of the check, and left the city for a few days. The old 
lady, decked out in her best, in due time called and presented 
the check, and was politely informed that it would not be hon- 
ored, as the gentleman had no money there." 


The confidence game, so much practised now-a-days, con- 
sists in the basest deception. It is daily practised on unsus- 
pecting persons. Sometimes the sympathies are enlisted by a 
doleful tale of accident or aflBdction, and money is needed for 
instant use. A man will call at a private residence and inform 
tha lady that an intimate friend of hers has just fallen in a 
fainting fit, or has met with a serious accident in the street, 
and, as he has no money, "would she please let him have 
enough to pay a hackman to take the injured person home." 
There are few but will immediately respond to such a demand, 
and the next thing they do is to hasten to the house of their 
friend to offer aid and sympathy — only to find they have been 
the victim of an adroit confidence operator. 

The daily papers have many advertisements calling attention 
to some "lucrative business chance," "a vacancy for the right 
kind of a man," or "opportunities for ladies to engage in a 
light and profitable business," most of which are only schemes 
by which to delude the credulous reader. 

"Wanted Immediately — One more lady to learn telegraphy; 
situation after learning. Address — Superintendent, box 1, 
this office." 

The preceding is a copy of an advertisement that occurred 
in one of the leading San Francisco dailies not long ago. 
Numerous applications were made to the address, by worthy 
and respectable young ladies, and after due consultation with 
the advertiser, the arrangement for instruction was made. 
"Superintendent" was a very amiable and prepossessing young 
man, and represented himself as superintendent of an impor- 
tant telegraph company. In every instance, an advance of a 
considerable sum was required before the lessons began, which 
in the aggregate amounted to a handsome little capital. Some 
one of his students after a time became distrustful of the 
validity of his agreement, and communicating her suspicions 


to her friends, an investigation and complete expose in the 
city press followed, showing that the so-called "superintend- 
ent " was a full-fledged conSdence man of the most villainous 
type. Such is the crsduiiuj of huninnity, i-hat swindlers of 
all kinds have abundant material to operate on. Where the 
strongest inducements are held out, the greatest swindles are 
generally perpetrated. 

A woraan adopted the following novel method to delude her 
victims. She would decoy a gentleman into her house on pre- 
tense that his v/ife hr«d engaged her to make some shirts for 
him, and she wished to take his measure. The husband, no 
doubt congratulating himself for having so thoughtful a wife, 
would go in, and v/hile standing to be measured, hia coat and 
vest off, there v.'ould come a loud rapping at the door. At 
this sudden alarm, the vfoman would manifest great dismay, 
and give various hints as to the ugliness and jealousy of her 
husband, who was about to enter. This would, of course, ex- 
cite the unsuspecting man, and as the door was about to give 
way, under the repeated thumps from the angered husband, he 
would flee precipitately, leaving coat, vest, and their contents 
behind — the booty of the ingenious operator. Such games aa 
this are too bold, however, to be practised long in a place. 

Policemen have become notorious for levying blackmail from 
the law-breaking characters on their beats. They not unfre- 
cj^uently abuse their power by frightening ignorant innocent 
persons into paying them, to escape arrest. The Chinese 
quarter is said to be the most profitable " beat" in San Fran- 
cisco, for speculative policemen. The whole of "3arbary 
Coast " is very desirable, for there are hundreds of villains in- 
festing it who are always ready to drop a glittering eagle be- 
tween themselves and danger. 

The public is often the victim of the confidence game as 
practised by the newspapers. All San Franciscans, no doubt, 
remember the firm of Cheat & Swindle, who opened up business, 
with flying colors, a few years ago, on Market Street. They 
were praised for their enterprise and honest dealing, by the 
city papers (all for pay of course); their goods were the best and 
the fuiesl; and their prices the most reasonable in the city. 
Well, the public patronized them liberally for a while, but soon 
discovered that they had been cheated in every deal, and that 
the whole concern was a grand swindle. If an influential citi- 


zen would go to Lis friends, and, under the same circumstances, 
for hire, urge them to patronize so-and-so, he would soon be 
driven out of the community; yet the press does the same thing 
with impunity. 

It is a fact, that but few are aware of, but nevertheless tme, 
that many of the druggists in San Francisco, charge double 
the amount that it is worth, for compounding prescriptions, 
BO as to be able to allow the prescribiug physician the commis- 
sion (60 per cent.) he demands. This is simply a species of 
confidence swindling. The patient has no idea of what the cost 
should be, and this ignorance is taken advantage of by the 
physician and druggist. 

"Physicians" sometimes jDick up a man they know to be 
afflicted, and urge him to allow them to prescribe for him. "I 
know you need it, sir, and I shan't charge you one cent," usu- 
ally induces assent. He is referred to a druggist who is ex- 
tremely "careful in comj)Ounding," and goes away with a 
" thankful heart for the doctor's kindness." Sixty per cent, on 
five or ten, and sometimes twenty, dollars, is very good pay 
for a single prescription, and ought to prompt an apparent 






FEW countries offer a greater variety of natural studies 
for painter and poet than California. The diverse 
beauty of California's natural scenery; the grandeur and mag- 
nificence of her landscapes; her placid or boisterous marine 
views; her mellow or radiant skies; her earth, her heavens, 
and even the peculiar characteristics of her animate life, all 
are art-inspiring. The tinge of romance imparted to the 
countr}^ by its native occupants, can find no fitter expression 
than upon the artist's canvas or in the pages of the poet. 
They alone extend the hand to rescue from obscurity the 
quaint history of those early days. They have not been idle. 

But not until 1871 was an organization of artists, for the 
promotion of the fine arts, by united effort, effected. Each 
had pursued his chosen path, indeiDcndent, and often obli^d- 
ous, of the channel others followed. In that year, the San 
Francisco Art Association was founded. The organization 
has met with generous support and public encouragement. 
At the receptions and public exhibitions, many fine paintings, 
by local and foreign artists, are shown. These exhibitions are 
very much enjoyed by the j^ubUc, inasmuch as the oi^jDortunity 
is had, of seeing the greater number of the finer works of art 
in the city. Besides this, the association is greatly benefited 
by coming into such pleasant relationship with the public. 
The interests of both thus become, to a degree, identical, and 
the association receives encouragement and support, while the 
public is educated and influenced to appreciate the value of 
such institutions. 

The refining influence the Art Association exerts on the 
community is not lost. The first year of its existence gave no 
visible signs of its cultivating power; the second, there were 


no material results; and perhaps at the close of the third, it 
would have been difficult to point out any particular fruit it 
had borne; but the germs had sprouted, and even at this early 
period of its history, the buds and opening blossoms are 
abundant. In this time, the School of Design has been estab- 
lished, and is now in such a flourishing condition as to 
encourage the hope that San Francisco will, in a very few 
years, have the leading Art School of the United States. 
Eveiything is favorable to this — the equable climate, the 
scenery of the country, and the vigorous and healthful intel- 
lects of the youthful San Franciscans. 

The founding of the School of Design was the chief object 
of the organization, and to its permanent establishment and 
advancement, the efibrts of the officers and members of the 
association are directed. The tuition fee for instruction in 
this school is $32.00 per session, of four months, for all classes, 
except in oil painting, which is $40.00 per term. The average 
attendance of pupils, since the opening, has been sixty. 

Through the influence of Mons. Breuil, French consul at 
this port, and who has proven himself a sincere friend of the 
organization, the association was supplied with a valuable col- 
lection of antique casts, a donation from the French Govern- 
ment. This collection embraces eight life-size statues, twenty 
basso relievos frtim the frieze of the Parthenon at Athens, 
twenty-six busts, and one statuette. The association has 
purchased others of equal value to the art student, so that 
now, in this department, everything is very complete. 

The society is supported wholly by voluntary contributions 
from the public. Its management has .been in the hands of 
able persons, who have conducted it most economicall3^ It is 
not likely that so generous a population as the people of San 
Francisco are reputed to be, will neglect to properly support 
and forward the interests of so worthy an institution as the 
San Francisco Art Association. By upholding and encoui'ag- 
ing it, they are weaving laurels for their own brows. 

The members of the Association number six hundred and 
sixty. Of these, there are seven honorary, and one hundred 
and twenty life members. A life membership, with full privi- 
leges of the rooms and exhibitions of the Society, is obtained 
by the payment of one hundred dollars. The ordinary mem- 
bership fee is two dollars, with a current expense of one dollar 


monthly. The Society possesses a library of about three hun- 
dred volumes, comprising many of the standard works on Art. 
Although small, it is of considerable value, and forms a good 
nucleus about which to build. 


It is not an idle boast to assert that San Francisco has some 
excellent artists. Some of their productions are of such merit 
as to meet with favorable criticism in the most refined commu- 
nities in the world. Their paintings are sought by the most 
cultivated persons, for the merit they possess in artistic execu- 
tion, as well as for the subjects represented. 

For a long time, however, they struggled in obscurity — the 
inhabitants of their own city patronizing the eastern and for- 
eign professionals in preference to them. But thus it has ever 
been. Even in the remote past ages, a prophet was without 
honor in his own country. When we are in familiar inter- 
course with a person, we are quick to recognize his faults and 
imperfections; but slow to see his merit. So it was, until the 
local artists of San Francisco had received favorable notice 
from distant cities, they were unappreciated at home. " Dis- 
tance always lends enchantment." 

Of the landscape painters in San Francisco, who have devel- 
oped real artistic talent, there are Thomas Hill, "William Keith, 
Virgil Williams, Norton Bush, Wm. Hahn, and W. L. Marple. 

Mr. Hill stands foremost. His paintings are noted for their 
richness and brilliancy of color, and their bold and broad style 
of execution — having the reality and solidity of nature, that is 
so difficult to express on simply a flat piece of canvas. He 
chooses for his studies the grand and magnificent aspects of 
nature. The Yosemite Valley is his favorite haunt — his largest 
and finest pictures being views in that locality. Chromos have 
been executed after several of his works. His pictures are al- 
ways marketable, and command a good price. He is one of the 
oldest established artists in the city. 

William Keith ranks next to Mr. Hill in popularity. In 
truth, it would require a real artist to distinguish any differ- 
ence in their work as to superiority. Mr. Keith, however, 
studies the mellower side of nature for his subjects — turning 
aside from the craggy peak, impending height, and nishing 
torrent, to the quiet nooks and charming retreats in the more 
modest landscape. His coloring is rich, though delicate; cool 


and gray, yet in a luxuriant atmosphere. He confines his paint- 
ing to California scenery. 

Mr. Virgil Williams, at present Director of the San !Fran- 
cisco Art Association, has distinguished himself as a landscape 
painter. He is equally successful in figure painting also — his 
more recent studies having been in the latter class of work. 
Mr. Williams is a very earnest laborer for the promotion of 
Art. The jDrogress that has attended the School of Design is 
directly due to the interest he has taken in its success. 

Norton Bush is a landscape painter of great promise. He 
first won 2:>ublic attention by the success he made in painting 
Mount Diablo, which was exhibited at the first exhibition held 
under the auspices of the Mechanics' Institute, in 1858. His 
delineations of tropical scenerj^ are much admired. 

William Hahn is another successful artist, both in landscajDe 
and figtu'e j^ainting. His work is very thorough — much atten- 
tion being given to detail. His paintings lack that boldness 
that characterizes the studies of Hill and Keith, but they are 
fine in finish, and executed with great freedom and brilliancy. 

W. L. Marple is a very prolific landscape painter, though he 
has not yet attained to a high degree of excellence. He, how- 
ever, enjoys considerable popularity, and deserves much credit 
for his studious efforts. 

Although the landscape* has greater attractions for artists, 
there are several skillful portrait and figure painters in 
San Francisco, whose names are familiarly known in art 

For diversity of talent and excellence, Charles Nahl is 
j)reeminent. He is happily successful in a variety of styles. 
There is a boldness in his work — a sort of Dore force — that 
is a near approach to audacity. Yet, above all this, there 
is a sublimity that does not fail to charm. He devotes 
himself principally to portrait painting. 

Toby Kosenthal — possibly not a whit suj)erior to Mr. 
Nahl — is more poj)ular as a portrait and figure painter. His 
"Elaine" is, no doubt, a meritorious work of art, and its 
conception and execution would have elevated him to the 
rank of superior painters; but the circumstances attending 
its exhibition in San Francisco brought him so prominently 
into public notice, that his fame is XDcrhaps in advance of 
his merit, when compared with other distinguished artists. 


This painting was suggested by some lines in Tennyson's 
poem, entitled Elaine. The text of the artist was: 

" Then rose the dumb old servitor, and the dead 

Steer'd by the dumb, went upward with the flood — 

In her right hand the lily, in her left. 

The letter — all her bright hair streaming down — 

And all the coverlid was cloth of gold 

Drawn to her waist, and she herself in white, 

All but her face, and that clear-featured face 

Was lovely, for she did not seem as dead. 

But fast asleep, and lay as tho' she smiled." 

The picture was purchased in Munich by Mrs. Robert C 
Johnson, of this city. Before it was brought to San Fran- 
cisco, it was on exhibition in Boston, where it attracted 
throngs of peoj)le, and was much admired by Boston critics. 
It had been on exhibition in San Francisco but a few days, 
when, during the night, a sacrilegious villain entered the 
gallery, cut the canvas from its mountings, and carried it off. 
When the theft was discovered, next morning, it created much 
excitement, especially among the lovers of art. Everyone 
was at a loss to understand what object a thief would have in 
stealing a picture. Such things are of rare occurrence, and 
hence more comment was provoked than had a bank robbery 
been committed. 

The detectives immediately went to work to ferret out the 
criminal, and, if possible, recover the "stolen beauty;" but 
he had left such dim tracks behind him, that thej^ had not 
much hope of success. They were exceedingly fortunate, 
however, for within forty-eight hours from the time the j)icture 
was removed, it had been restored to its frame, and the rob- 
bers safely lodged in the city prison. They had stolen it with 
the hope that a large reward would be offered for its return. 

After this, it was but natural for a curious jDCople to flock 
to see the painting. The newspapers were filled with com- 
ments on the circumstance, and (strange to say) as soon as 
they learned it was stolen, they were impressed with its value 
and excellence, and forthwith manifested their appreciation of 
the artist's work, and the artist himself, by lengthy discourses 
upon its many beauties and his wonderful talents. Thus did 
evil bring forth good for Toby Rosenthal. 

Toby has been studying at Munich, since 1866. He is but 
twenty-eight years old, and if his future progress is as rapid 
as has been his past, he will in a few years rival in excellence 


tlie great masters . He is giving- mucli attention to historical 
reading, with a view of choosing for his paintings historical 
subjects. His latest efforts have been in that direction. 

Tojetti, an Italian artist of San Francisco, is an excellent 
portrait and figure painter. He has undertaken some very 
difficult studies, and handles them masterly. He evidently 
will excel in allegorical painting. 

Since Toby Eosenthal's "Elaine" was received with so much 
praise, Signor Tojetti has produced a painting of the same title, 
and from the same text, though differing very much in concep- 
tion. It is well executed, and, in the opinion of some critics, 
is superior to Toby's famous study. , 

Mr. Benoni Irwin has shown considerable originality as an 
artist. His work is mostly portrait painting. 

Our marine painters are limited to two. J. G. Denny is very 
successful in this branch of art. His artistic talent is mani- 
fest in the choosing as well as the execution of his studies. 
His marine pictures are picturesque and pleasing. 

In the same line is Wm. Coulter, j'et a young man, but 
rapidly developing into a first-class marine painter. 

S. M. Brooks, stands alone as a painter of still life. He is 
a thorough artist. His paintings of fish have given him an 
enviable rejDutation, and in this peculiar line he has no supe- 
rior in the United States. His paintings of mineral specimens, 
quartz, and ore of different kinds, are so true to the natural 
formation, that a mining expert would mistake them for real 
"samples," and would very likely not discover the deception 
until he had attempted to pick them up for the purpose of 
"squinting" at them through his pocket "telescope." 

There are numerous young artists who have received their 
meed of praise from the critics and the public. Some of these 
perhaps, should be mentioned in this chapter, but their merit 
is so uniform — descending in such easy gradation to the un- 
professional amateur — that were we to mention one, we would 
feel in duty bound to name the whole list. Then let it suffice 
to offer to them, collectively, this tribute of praise — that they 
are plodding along faithfully, as becometh those who aspire 
to excellence and honorable recognition. A few have been 
sent to the art schools of Europe, to complete their education 
— their patrons being among the wealthy citizens of San Fran- 
cisco. Others, prompted by a firm ambition, have gone thither' 
depending entirely upon their personal resources. 




SAN Francisco's photographers. 

SAN FRANCISCO has led in the art of photography. Her 
photographic artists have not only been progressive as to 
excellence of workmanship, but also inventive. Many improve- 
ments for the perfect utilization of this valuable science, have 
originated with them, and nowhere has greater excellence been 
reached in photography, than in San Francisco. Everything 
has been favorable to the advancement of this art. The thrift 
of the population, and in early times before railroad commu- 
nication was had with the Eastern States, the isolation from 
former homes and friends was so complete, that the desire was 
universal among the inhabitants to have pictures taken of 
themselves and the most notable places and scenes in the 
country, to send to distant friends; and therefore photographic 
artists received much encouragement and profitable patronage. 
The old-established firm of Bradley & Eulofson has won 
wide renown by the superiority of its portrait photographs. 
Indeed, there is no photographic gallery in the United States 
that enjoys so favorable a poi:)ularity as that under the direct 
supervision of Mr. Rulofson, and the famous art halls in the 
old world find in it a successful rival. This firm was estab- 
lished in 1849, and its growth in popularity has been parallel 
with the growth of the city. Mr. Bradley, the senior member, 
has an extensive acquaintance in commercial circles, both in 
America and EuroiDC, being the largest importer of j)hoto- 
graphic material in the city, thereby securing to the business 
of the gallery the very best of everything that is required in 
the practice of the photographic art, as well as increasing its 
popularity. But the prestige this house has gained, is more 
particularly due to the earnest enterprise of Mr. Rulofson. 
By his business ability as well as by his superior artistic talent, 
he has builded a "palace of art," that has placed him at the 


head of his profession. As an appreciation of his earnest labor 
and acquirements, he was elected to the presidency of the Na- 
tional Photographic Association, some two years ago and still 
continues in that capacity. He is eminently iitted for the po- 
sition, as his experience in the profession has been large, and' 
what is more imj^ortant, his soul is in his chosen work. 

As evidence that the excellence this firm professes to have 
attained is real, it may be mentioned that the Philadelphia 
gold medal was awarded to it, for the best photographs in the 
United States; the gold medal from the Mechanics' Institute, 
San Francisco, at their exhibition held in 1875, for the best 
photographs in San Francisco; the Chilian medal, at the grand 
exhibition, in Santiago, 1875; and the Vienna bronze medal, from 
the World's Exposition, at Vienna, for the best photographs iu 
the world. 

In this gallery may be seen jDortraits of the most notable 
persons who have visited San Francisco, and honored them 
with a " sitting," among whom are. Sir Henry Parks, Duke of 
Genoa, Duke de Penthieve, Sir Greorge Ferguson Bowen, 
Duke of Manchester, Sir Kedmond Barry, King Kalakaua, and 
H. M. Dom Pedro, Emperor of Brazil. 

In landscape photography, Mr. C. E. Watkins is unexcelled. 
Perhaps the grandeur and beauty of his subjects may have had 
something to do with winning his popularity, but whatever 
may be the secret of his success does not render that success 
the less. His Yosemite views have made his name familiar 
throughout the civilized world, and have likewise given Cali- 
fornia a wide reputation as a country possessing grand and 
varied natural scenery. The sj)lendid scenes through which 
the transcontinental railroad passes; the beautiful sylvan 
scenes that abound along Columbia river, Oregon, characterized 
for their subdued grandeur; and the famous " big trees " of 
MarijDosa and Calaveras, all have been faithfully reproduced 
by Mr. Watkins, and are among the attractive representations 
that adorn the walls of the "Yosemite" Gallery. In this 
specialty Mr. Watkins has astonished the world, and as a recog- 
nition of his excellent work, he has been awarded numerous 
premiums and medals from exhibitions and fairs of different 
cities, states, and nations. Mr. Watkins is the pioneer photog- 
rapher of San Francisco, and like many of those early 
" comers," has won for himself an enviable name. 


Connected with the Yosemite Galleiy, in the portrait de- 
partment, are Messrs. I. W. Taber and Thomas H. Boyd, both 
of -whom have long enjoyed an honorable distinction as skilled 
photographers. Mr. Taber has introduced many improve- 
ments in the art, among which are the "pictorial" photo- 
graj)hs, very pleasing and picturesque in style; the "prome- 
nade" and the "statuesque," all of which are his original 

Mr. G. D. Morse, of the Morse Gallery, has likewise added 
to the list of improvements in portraits. His "boudoir" 
pictures have become exceedingly popular among the San 
Prancisco ladies. 

Houseworth is another superior San Francisco photogra- 
j)her, having gained an enviable reputation for his skill in 
every branch of the art. There are few visitors to the Pacific 
Coast but become familiar with the name, by seeing it in con- 
nection with a portrait of a friend or some notable person or 

There are many other artists of merit in the city, some of 
whom are no doubt equally proficient in j)hotography, to those 
we have named. The poj)ularity of these mentioned is suffi- 
cient to show that San Francisco, although very remote from 
the great centers of civilization, has rapidly advanced in those 
things that appeal to refined and aesthetic tastes for ai^precia- 






A STROLL along the wharves that semi-girt the city, perhaps 
impresses one more with the commercial importance of 
the port of San Francisco, than anything that might be said or 
written. There the eyes take in the real and visible evidences 
of this greatness. Miles ujDon miles of wharves, burdened 
■with miscellaneous merchandise; a cargo of tea, just arrived 
from the orient, in this; in that immense pile of bags, a cargo 
■of wheat, awaiting shipment to a foreign port; boxes, casks, 
bundles, bales, bags, and hogsheads, obstruct the way at every 
side. Donkey engines puff and snort, as they laboriously 
turn the reels that elevate great buckets of coal from the holds 
of merchant clippers. Cartmen, grim with dust and smoke, 
rant at their painstaking "plugs," lest some rival dray may 
carry off their load of stuff. Captains of ships give their 
orders to red-faced mates, who give them echo in stentorian 
tones, and from away up in the ship's rigging is heard the 
quick response, " Aye, aye, sir !" 

Following the line of the wharves with the eye, a forest of 
masts and smoke-stacks is seen — in the foreground, massive 
and sky-reaching, but in the hazy distance, transformed into 
pipe-stems, planted in cork floats, with a network of cobwebs 
about their needle-tops. 

Away around toward the southern terminus of the city's 
water-front, a low but massive structure, that seems to sit upon 
the water, obstructs the view. Upon its broad side is visible, 
through the smoky atmosphere, traced in large white lines, 
"P. M. S. S. Co." This is the warehouse and office of the 
Pacific Mail Steamship Company, and those floating monsters 
alongside, are steamers engaged in the oriental traffic. 

This company was organized in New York City in 1848, and 


is the oldest steamship company, with the exception of the 
Cunard, in existence. The jDrojectors of this important enter- 
prise were Messrs. Howland and Aspinwall. These gentle- 
men, so well known to the commercial world, were the first to 
appreciate the advantages and importance of the gold dis- 
coveries in California, and with remarkable foresight, at once 
prepared to establish a line of ocean carriers that would afibrd 
the thousands of adventurers, whose faces were turned anxiously 
westward, a quick and comfortable transit to the new El Dorado. 
From the time the first little steamer rounded Cape Horn, 
to the present day, the business of the company has con- 
stantly and rapidly increased, until now it operates a 
commercial fleet whose capacity, speed, and beauty, commands 
the admiration of the world. 


The fleet of the company consists of sixteen iron screw- 
propeller ships, and nine wooden side-wheel vessels, the 
greater number of which are of recent construction, and are 
first-class in every respect. The names of the vessels, their 
tonnage, eaj)acity, and the trade they are respectively engaged 
in, are given in the following tabular statement: 

Name of Vessel. Build and Propeller. Tons Trade engaged in. 


City of Peking Iron screw 5080 China 

City of Tokio Iron screw 5080 China 

China Wood, side- wheel . . . 3836 China 

Alaska Wood, side-wheel. . .4012 China 

Great Republic Wood, side-wheel . . 3882 ... . China 

Colorado Wood, side-wheel . . .4000 China 

City of San Francisco. .Iron screw 1490 Australia 

City of Sydney Iron screw 3000 Australia 

City of New York Iron screw 3500 Australia 

Australia Iron screw 3000 Australia 

Zelandiau Iron screw 3000 Australia 

City of Panama Iron screw 1490 Panama 

Colima Iron screw 2906 .... Panama 

Granada Iron screw 2572 Panama 

Arizona , Wood, side-wheel. . .2793 Panama 

Montana *. . . Wood, side-wheel. . .2677 Panama 

Constitution Wood, side-wheel. . .3575 Panama 

Acapulco Iron screw 2900 N. Y. and Panama 

Colon Iron screw .3000 N. Y. and Panama 

Henry Chauncey Wood, side-wheel. . .2600 N. Y. and Aspinwall 

Dacota Wood, side-wheel. . .2135 Vancouver Island 

Salvador Iron screw 10G6 Central America 

Costa Eica Iron screw 2000 Central America 

Winchester Iron screw . 700 Central America 

Honduras Iron screw 1400 . ... Central America 



Taking San Francisco as the commercial center, the active 
lines of ocean transportation diverge in every direction where 
there is water to float a craft. Although there are numerous 
navigation companies, whose vessels are daily passing in and 
out through the Golden Gate, and among which there is none 
other more distinctively Californian than that operated hy 
Messrs. Goodall, Nelson & Perkins, the Pacific Mail Steam- 
ship Company has extended its lines, and formed connections 
with other companies, until all the islands of the Pacific, 
China, Japan, the principal ports of America, Europe, Asia, 
Africa, Australia, and the more important islands in all oceans, 
are of easy access to travel and traffic. Comfort and safety 
are insured; hence, countries that a few years ago were sa 
remote as to cause one to doubt whether they existed at all, 
are now visited and adopted as homes by many of the inhabi- 
tants of all civilized nations; their resources are developed, 
and traffic increased, until the harvest that commerce reaps is 
enriching thousands of individuals and filling the coffers of 
nations. Speed, comfort, safety. These three words as ap- 
plied to ocean transportation, have built up the commerce of 
the world. 

The business of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company re- 
quires not less than thirty-five agencies, located at the more 
important points on the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts of the 
United States, Mexico, Central and South America, and Can- 
ada, England, Japan, China, and the West Indies. The ag- 
gregate tonnage capacity of its fleet is more than 70,000 tons, 
and the distance between direct and way ports that the steam- 
ers traverse in regular trips, exceeds 25,000 miles. 


America is celebrated for the completeness of her hotels, 
and San Francisco, in particular, has reason to be somewhat 
vain, and perhaps boastful, as to the perfection she has at- 
tained in providing for the entertainment of her guests. Yet 
so advanced have the proprietors of both land and water lines 
of travel become in their notions of convenience and comfort, 
that the traveler of to-day may enjoy all the luxuries that a 
residence at a first-class hotel affords, and still be traversing 
distance at the rate of from ten to forty miles an hour. 


The magnificent steamer, "City of Peking," is perhaps the 
nearest apjoroach to a real floating palace that has been made 
in ship-building. Every provision for the comfort and pleas- 
ure of the passengers seems to have been made. The salons 
are as spacious and elegant as the drawing-rooms of the mod- 
ern millionaire. Mirrors, choice paintings, and every variety 
of adornment that is pleasing to the aesthetic taste, are artis- 
ticalh' arranged about the room. 

The cuisine, also, is unsurpassed by the most accomplished 
hotel caterer. The chambers, or state-rooms, are perfect in 
their appointments; for convenience, they are certainly lack- 
ing in nothing. "With perfect ventilation, and a hixurious 
couch, what could be more invigorating than the sweet refresh- 
ing sleep that those enjoy who are "rocked in the cradle of 
the deep," and fanned by the life-giving breeze that forever 
blows pure from off the water; bringing upon its invisible 
"wings no poisonous vapor, but tinging the cheeks with the 
ruddy glow of health, reviving the spirits as well as renewing 
the body ? What more pleasant than a voyage where all the 
surroundings are suggestive of comfort and of ease — unless, 
perchance, there is sea-sickness aboard — where every w-ant is 
anticipated and supplied ? 

Such is the attainment of modern ocean transportation. A 
£rst cabin passage on the " City of Peking," places at his 
command anything that the most fastidious "traveled" person 
may desire. 

This vessel is remarkable for size as well as complete equip- 
ment — the famous ' ' Great Eastern " being the only larger 
steamer ever launched. 


Access to the records of the business done by the Pacific 
Mail Steamship Company, reveals astonishing results. The 
San Francisco office being the most important on the Pacific 
coast, is a scene of business activity' that tells itself somewhat 
of the vastness of this great enterprise. 

As the starting point for the Orient, Austi-alia, and the 
Southern Seas, as Avell as many domestic ports, there is an air 
of business, of bustle, of systematic w^ork, and of confusion, 
that is chaotic to the mind at first, but after awhile resolves 
itself into order — not to aaj monotony. 


There may be seen a steerage load of Celestials pouring out 
from the hold of a vessel, steaming and panting as they labor 
Tip the gang-plank under their queer-looking packets of 
luggage. They look about them in perfect wonderment at the 
new scenes they have come upon, and their surprise is 
manifested by the incessant guttural jargon that strikes the ear 
in harsh discord. 

There, too, is the person who is always in a hurrj', but is 
never "on time." lie rushes into the office, panting and 
sweating, and, in answer to his query, is told for the tenth 
time, that the steamer leaves at precisely 12 o'clock m. He 
looks at the clock, and discovers that only one minute remains, 
and off he goes at a break-neck pace, and is only prevented 
from leaping headlong after the boat — -which is just moving 
away — by sheer force. He is still in a hurry, however, lest he 
should miss the next boat, which sails a day, or perhaps a 
Tveek, hence. 

In the centre of that group is some person of local celebrity, 
who is "off for a health voyage." How he inwardly gloats on 
his importance, as his friends crowd around to do him homage; 
and how courteous are they ! When he is out of office, or 
loses his coin, will his bosom heave with that manly pride, and 
will those "friends" who grasp his hand so fervently, and nod 
and say "yes" to every word he utters, know him then? Ah, 
well, they may! why not? 

In another group is a person who is taking leave of his 
friends, bound for a foreign land, whence he may not return 
again. There are sorrowful faces about him, and real tears of 
anguish are seen to start from eyes already swollen with 

Age, decrepid and forlorn; youth, buoyant and hopeful; the 
habiliments that betoken wealth; the brand of poverty, the 
glow of health, the ghastliness of disease and death itself — 
every type and condition of humanity mingles in the hubbub 
of arriving and departing steamers. What a character study 
is the moving panorama of life, constantly in action about the 
docks and offices of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company ! 






O AN FEANCISCANS have become notorious for their procli- 
k3 gality. The news has gone abroad that, as a people, they 
lead fast lives, and are given to luxuriousness and extravagance; 
that they make money more rapidly and part with it more freely 
than the i^eople of any other city in the world. But it does 
not occur, in these wide-spread reports, that this apparently 
spendthrift habit is prompted by any other than a selfish mo- 
tive to gratify morbid desires — to purchase personal pleasure 
and enjoyment. There is, no doubt^ much truth in such state- 
ments, yet subject to very exceptional modifications. 

Selfishness is the controlling j^rinciple — or rather the uncon- 
trolled — of humanity, and there is no apparent reason why 
San Franciscans should be less human in this respect than the 
inhabitants of other cities. But they are a liberal community, 
benevolent and humane. They are not hardened beyond the 
reach of sympathy, but a^e touched at the sight of misery and 
suffering of any kind. They possess those finer sensibilities 
that are awakened by a pathetic appeal, and do not offer words 
of condolence only, but extend material aid to the needy. There 
are very few of them — including even those who possess the 
greatest wealth — but have passed through the various stages 
of want and poverty, and they are therefore better prepared to 
appreciate any condition of their fellows, than had they never 
known like circumstances. There are few among them of that 
class, who, having suddenly stepped from the low levels of pov- 
erty into affluence, as suddenly forget their former associates, 
and fail to recognize them when they meet. They may put 
on their shoddy air, and affect great importance ; but the con- 
stant assumption of such a guise is too taxing to patience, and 
too much restricts that personal ease and freedom that Califor- 
nians so much cherish. 


There are more than one hundred benevolent organizations 
and societies in San Francisco, of an exclusive social and 
charitable character. These are of every class of reputable 
order, and most of t]iem are well suj^ported, and have large 
memberships. Their wealth is manifested by the numerous 
asylums, hospitals, homes, and schools that they have estab- 
lished and liberally suj)port, and the benefits they bestow are 
proved by the marked absence of cases of extreme poverty and 
sujBfering, from the community. 


Besides the Masonic and Odd Fellows Orders, there are 
numerous secret societies in the city, some of which are very 
wealthy, and have many members. 

The Knights of Pythias is a strong organization, there being 
twelve subordinate lodges, besides the Grand Lodge of the 
State, that meet in San Francisco. The first lodge of this 
order, in California, was organized March 25, 1869. 

The Ancient Order of Hibernians, first organized in the 
city, March 29, 1869, has nine distinct divisions, with an ag- 
gregate membership of nearly twenty five hundred. 

The wigwam of the ' ' Big Chief " of the Improved Order 
of Red Men, is in the city, with eighteen families of the tribe. 
Also, the Independent Order of Eed Men, a similar organiza- 
tion, exclusively German, with nine stamms or encamioments. 
This latter order has a Hall Association (incorj)orated), with 
a capital of thirty thousand dollars; also an Independent 
Mutual Aid Association. (It might be remarked as a very 
unfortunate circumstance for California poHticians, that there 
are no fat governmental agencies connected with either of 
these tribes of Red Men.) 

The Grand Army of the Republic, organized in January, 
1867, has one established post in the city. This organization 
is composed of honorably discharged soldiers and sailors, and 
marines of the United States Army and Navy, who 'served in 
the Union service to suppress the late rebellion. The objects 
are to cultivate a fraternal feeling among its members, aid the 
distressed, and provide for the widows and orphans of deceased 

The United Ancient Order of Druids, an organization with 
quite an extensive membershii^, has seventeen groves. This 


fraternity has a creditable library for the benefit of its mem- 
bers, and is apparently a popular organization, especially with 
foreigners. There are a great variet}' of other societies, similar 
in character to these, that are yet in their infancy, or are con- 
fined to persons of a particular nationality, rendering them of 
minor public importance. 

All these orders are of that class of societies temied "secret,'* 
and have the same general aim in view, though choosing dif- 
ferent methods in formality and ceremony, to accomplish it. 
Their benevolence, as societies, is confined to their own mem- 

The congregations of almost every church have societies 
whose objects are beneficent — generally devoted to some spe- 
cial interest. The Episcopal Church takes the lead in sup- 
porting charities — St. Luke's Hos2:)ital, the Church Union, and 
the Church Home, all being maintained, principally by mem- 
bers of this religious denomination. 

The Young Men's Christian Association occupies a good 
position to aid in the work of humanity, although it does not 
meet with the general encouragement that it should. It 
possesses a hall, with a library, reading-room and gymnasium, 
and ought to be largely patronized for the conveniences it 
offers for pleasant recreation, if not out of respect for its more 
laudable objects. Noon prayer-meetings are daily held in the 
rooms of the association, but sparsely attended. The associa- 
tion was formed in September, 1853. 

The Boys' and Girls' Aid Society is a veiy praiseworthy 
organization, and though yet hardly established, is doing a 
good work in reclaiming from the streets unjprotected children. 
In the building occupied by this society, lodging-rooms are 
provided for homeless little ones, and the object is to do 
everything possible for their welfare. First of all should 
friendless little children be provided for, as they are helpless, 
and are in nowise accountable for their condition. 

The Little Sisters' Society is also a very worthy organiza- 
tion, having for its object the care of the little children of 
working women, to enable the mother to do a day's work. 
It had a peculiar, and we might say accidental, origin. A 
few children united in holding a fair, to obtain relief for a 
single needy family, and so successful was their first 
endeavor, that they decided to continue the effort, and have 
now a comfortable nursery for infants. 


The British Benevolent Societj' of California has "been very 
successful in the promotion of its object. " It was organized 
in 1865, for the j)nrpose of affording relief to sick and 
destitute members and persons who were subjects of Great 
Britain at the time of their birth, and of pi'omoting the 
social and intellectual improvement of its members." It has 
a membership of thirteen hundred. The number of applicants 
for relief averages about one hundred and twentj'-five per 
month, and there is disbursed nearly five thousand dollars a 
year, or an average of a little less than five dollars to each 
applicant. Through the agency of the society, employment is 
furnished to many needy persons, and a variety of advantages 
afforded them by which they may help themselves. 

The German population support the largest and most 
efficient benevolent society in the State. The German General 
Benevolent Society of San Francisco was organized in 1854, 
with one hundred and five members. Its objects are to aid 
unfortunate Germans in every way possible, but more par- 
ticularly to attend to the sick. The revenue of the society 
— which consists in assessments levied on the members — is 
between thirty-five and forty thousand dollars a year, all of 
which is judiciously disbursed in the interest of charity. The 
city membership numbers two thousand eight hundred and 
fift}^ while in the country there are two hundred and twent}'- 
five members. The property of the society is valued at 
seventy-five thousand dollars. 

The Scotch citizens have a benevolent organization — the St. 
Andrew's Society — with a membership roll of over eight 
hundred, with kindred objects to the British and German. 

The Italian Benevolent Society is also organized for dispens- 
ing charity to the needy, and affording relief to the sick. 

Throughout the city, many noble charities are quietly per- 
formed, so that to-day there should not be a single worthy 
person suffering from lack of attention, or the necessaries of 


The oldest hospital building in the city, of any particular 
importance, was erected at Kincon Point by the government, 
in 1853, for sailors of the merchant and national marine, it 
now stands in a dilapidated condition, a commemorating monu- 
ment of the earthquake of 1868. It is a large four-story 


brick building, designed to accommodate eight hundred pa- 
tients. For a number of years after its completion, it was one 
of the finest structures in the city. It was abandoned after 
the earthquake, and now serves only as a prominent landmark. 
It will be a fortunate escape if it does not, ere its walls have 
crumbled away, serve in the two-fold capacity of hospital and 
tomb. The one mission it has fulfilled, and there is only want- 
ing for a consummation of the other, a constant passing of 
people to and fro, beside its tottering walls — for, sooner or 
later, they will fall — a mass of ruins. 

After this building was deserted, the government hospital 
2)atients underwent numerous removals, but were finally set- 
tled in the building formerly used as an asylum for the deaf, 
dumb, and blind, at the corner of Mission and Fifteenth 
Streets. There they remained until 1875, when the new Ma- 
rine Hospital building on the Presidio Reservation was com- 
pleted. These buildings are constructed entirely of wood, at 
a cost of sixty thousand dollars, and are well arranged for the 
comfort and improvement of jjatients . 

The City and County Hospital is located in the southern 
suburbs of the city. It has a capacity to accommodate three 
hundred and seventy-five patients, which, thus far, has been 
sufficient; the number of inmates ranging from three hundred 
to three hundred and sixty. The hospital grounds embrace 
an area of ten acres — giving ample room for enlargement in 
future, besides affording pleasant, light employment in its cul- 
tivation, for those patients whose affliction is not so severe as 
to confine them constantly in doors. In addition to the in- 
mates at the hospital, the attending jDhysicians prescribe for 
nearly ten thousand out-patients annually. 

It is a disgraceful fact that almost every institution commit- 
ted to the charge of public officials, is subjected to gross mis- 
management, and the City and County Hospital of San Fran- 
cisco is unfortunately not an exception to the rule. 

The Almshouse also occupies a suburban position — near 
Lake Honda. It is maintained at an ex2:)ense of about one 
hundred thousand dollars per year, and supports an average 
of four hundred inmates. In the same locality, is a hospital 
building for the Chinese, and another for small-pox patients, 
erected during the small-pox epidemic in 18G8-9. The Chinese 
patients number from forty to sixty, and are generally afflicted 
with chronic diseases. 


Prior to 1865, San Francisco had no health officer, and no 
mortuary records had been preserved in the city. In that year, 
the San Francisco Health Office was established, and in 1870 
the State Legislature created a City Board of Health, to be 
composed of the Mayor and four physicians. This board has 
control of all the public charitable institutions of the city and 
county, and exercises a general supervision over all sanitary 

There is a German Hospital, established in 1853, and veiy 
much improved and enlarged since, furnishing accommodation 
to one hundred and thirty patients. It is under the control of 
the German Benevolent Society, and is very complete in com- 
fortable arrangement. 

The liaison de Sante, or French Hospital, supported by the 
Societe Frcmcaise de Bienfaisance Mutuelle, has a capacity for 
one hundred and seventy patients, and is also well appointed 
and admirably conducted. 

In 1868, the Italian Benevolent Society erected a hospital, 
■with rooms to accommodate forty j^atients, and maintained it 
until 1873, when, finding it impossible to satisfy a mortgage 
on the property, the inmates were removed to the French and 
St. Mary's Hospitals, and the building was transferred to the 
creditors. The Italian patients are now mostly disposed in 
the French Hospital. 

Perhaps the best conducted and most appropriately arranged 
j)rivate hosj)ital in the city is the St. Mary's, at the corner of 
Bryant and First Streets. It was built in 1861, and is under 
the care of the Sisters of Mercy. It is very commodious, and 
every internal arrangement is conducive to comfort. It pro- 
vides accommodation for one hundred and eight patients, and 
is generally full. 

St. Luke's Hospital, though having been established but a 
few years, and supported entirely by private contributions, is 
a model establishment, and will, no doubt, grow to be one of 
the noblest institutions of its kind in the city. It is the result 
of a united effort of the different Episcopal churches of San 
Francisco, yet its charity is not restricted to persons of any 
particular religious opinion, nationality, or creed. 

One of the most important charitable provisions is the San 
Francisco Lying-in Hospital and Foundling Asylum. It is 
intended for the retirement of respectable married women and 


unprotected single women, who liave previously borne a good 
moral character, and for the care and protection of all children 
born in the hospital, and foundlings, -without distinction of 
color. It differs from other charitable institutions, inasmuch 
as no cases of disease whatever are admitted. It is a fact,, 
•worthy of note, that this hospital is generally full. An aver- 
age of a hundred children are born in this institution, or left at 
the door to be cared for, every year. All applicants, if able, 
must pay for their accommodation ; but if j)oor, they are re- 
ceived and given the same treatment as those who pay the full 
demands for the services rendered. Great care is observed to 
prevent any disreputable i:)ersons from availing themselves of 
the benefits. The little foundlings, no doubt, receive tender 
care, but with all the kindly ministrations bestowed upon them, 
many soon die. Some of them are adopted into respectable 
families, and some are renioved by their mothers, while the 
remainder are kept in the asylum. The institution is free to 
all women in the State, and receives much of its support from 
contributions outside of the city. 

The San Francisco Female Hospital, estabhshed in 1868, 
was sustained by private donations and contributions until 
1870, when the State appropriated five thousand dollars a year 
for its support. It is designed for the care of poor, sick 
women, and its benefits are extended to persons of any nativity, 
religion, or social condition. 

The number of children born in this institution per year ex- 
ceeds seventy-five, more than half of which are of illegitimate 
parentage. The value of this hospital is apparent, as in many 
instances the mother would add to her first sin the greater 
crime of child-murder, to be rid of the innocent witness of her 

The Protestant Orphan Asylum is a magnificent building, 
erected at a cost of sixty thousand dollars. It has good ac- 
commodations for two hundred and fifty children. The in- 
mates number about one hundred and seventy-five, and are 
under the protection of sympathetic ladies. 

The Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum is a handsome edifice, 
more capacious and superior in many respects to the Protest- 
ant. In connection with the Asylum is a farm of over fifty 
acres, where a school has been established and a branch insti- 
tution for very young children, called St. Joseph's Infant Asy- 


lum. These Asylums are in charge of the Sisters of Charity, 
who are performing a noble service in the life-work they have 

Besides these already mentioned, there are other institutions 
for the relief of the afflicted and distressed, that although less 
pretentious, are doing their work wisely and well. The city, 
by its public and private charity, extends good accommoda- 
tions to about fifteen hundred patients, and the number of per- 
sons who accejDt of these benefits yearly, is but a little less 
than one thousand. The princij)le adopted by the charitable 
citizens and organizations is intended to be so broad and liberal 
that no one, whoever, may not, when in need seek the benefits 
— and seeking, find. Thus is humanity truly humane. 







TO view the beauties of San Francisco and its surroundings, 
tlie stranger must ajDproach from the sea, and as he jDasses 
through the portal of the Golden Gate he will be able to ob- 
tain a comprehensive idea of the city, and that magnificent 
harbor which affords shelter for the commerce of the world. 
Perhaips the most interesting feature of the bay, is the fortifi- 
cations which encomj)ass and make it nearly impregnable. 

After passing Seal Kock, the eye rests uj^on the guns of the 
Fort Point line of works, which frown down fi'om the heights 
above — extending from a short distance eastward of Point 
Lobos, on the right hand, past Fort Point, following the in- 
equalities of the ground. This line of works, nearly three- 
quarters of a mile in length, is considered one of the most 
formidable on the continent. It is a continuous line, with cen- 
tre salient. There are twenty-five batteries each containing 
two guns, with traverse and magazine in each battery. The 
guns are all of the Rodman j)attern, and 15-inch bore. At the 
centre salient is a 20-inch gun. The traverse to each battery 
is so arranged and extended over the glacis of the parapet, as 
to form a bonnet and serve as a shelter to the defenders. The 
parapets are at least thirty-six feet in thickness, some of them 
more. In each traverse is a magazine constructed of English 
cement, the walls of which are five feet in thickness. The 
cement is in turn covered with the earth which forms the trav- 
erse and the end of that portion used for storing ammunition 
abuts into the parapet itself, giving it additional security from 
the shot of the enemy. The first comj^artment of these maga- 
zines is a hall-way, which can be used as a shelter by the be- 
sieged — heavy doors dividing it from the magazine proper. 


The doorways are constructed of pressed brick, to whicli the 
cement work is joined. The cement of which these walls are 
constructed is entirely waterproof, and although soft when 
applied rapidly hardens and soon becomes of the solidity of 
granite. In the center of the line, provision is made for a 
mortar battery, mounting twelve heavy mortars. It is well 
understood that sea sand and earth, properly combined, make 
the only parapet which will successfully resist the fire of modern 
artillery. The sand hills contiguous to the work form the ma- 
terial desired. At Fort Point the sand which is so useful in 
the construction of batteries caused at one time great inconve- 
nience by drifting, and in the course of a few hours covering 
up the work of days. To prevent this, various plans were re- 
sorted to, without producing the result desired. Finally, a 
quantity of rich earth from the neighboring low land was ap- 
phed as atop dressing, two or three inches in dej)th, upon the 
sand. Upon this, clover and other small grasses grow luxu- 
riantly and form a firm, clean sod. 

Directly below this line of works, and occupying the point 
of land which is the southern portal of the Golden Gate, is 
the " Old Fort," as it is called. Upon this site, or rather on 
a plateau one hundred feet above, and in the rear of it, 
formerly stood a Spanish fortification, known as Fort Blanco. 
At the time this was first occupied by the American troops, 
under Major Hardy, of Stevenson's regiment, in March, 1847, 
it was a corridor fort, mounting ten iron guns — sixteen 
pounders. In 1854, the erection of the present fort was com- 
menced. It is built on the edge of the point bearing its name, 
three sides of the structure being in the water. The waves of 
the Pacific, as they roll through the Golden Gate, dash against 
the solid masonry of its foundation walls, and the white spray 
is tossed into the crevices of the iron blinds which protect the 
caseinates. The entrance gate, which is of iron, is flanked by 
two old Spanish guns, unmounted, bearing the arms of Charles 
III, and an inscription showing them to have been cast in 
Spain, in 1760? They were undoubtedly part of the armament 
of a Spanish frigate, and left here at the request of the 
Jesuits, to whom the territory was granted by Charles II, and 
who made their first settlement on the coast in 1769. The 
fort is of brick, modelled after Fort Sumter, and only differs 
from that historic fortress in having three tiers of guns in 


casemate and one in barbette, wliile Sumter had but two tiers 
in casemate. The ground floor, on the land side, is used for 
storing- supplies and ammunition. Above this are the oflicers' 
quarters, and the third tier on the same side is devoted to 
barracks for the troops. The guns on the lower tier are ten- 
inch columbiads; those on the second and third tiers are eight 
and ten-inch columbiads; while those in barbette, or on the 
roof, are twenty-four and forty-two pounders, old style. There 
are about one hundred guns in position, all told. The govern- 
ment maintains a light-house, built upon the roof. In the 
court below are furnaces for the pui'joose of heating shot. 
Eveiything connected with the fort is of the very best material, 
and admirably constructed. At the time it was built — it was 
finished in 1860 — it was considered a very strong fortress, but 
the advent of ironclads and heavy ordnance has made it com- 
paratively useless. In case of invasion, it might be deemed ad- 
visable to train the guns from the Lime Point batteries upon it, 
knock off the two upper tiers, and from the debris a very 
formidable jposition might be formed, which would prove as in- 
vulnerable as did Fort Sumter under similar treatment. 

The Golden Gate is one mile and seventeen yards wide; and 
directly opposite Fort Point, forming the northern portal of 
the Gate, is Lime Point. Upon this shore, within a limit of 
about three miles, are batteries, at three different points, all 
known under the grand name of the Lime Point batteries. 

From the deck of the incoming steamer, after viewing the 
formidable parapets of the Fort Point works, the stranger, if he 
will turn his eyes to the left, and keep a sharp lookout, will 
see, sheltered between the mountain points, which thrust 
themselves boldly into the bay, a little wedge-shaped valley; 
and following it down to the shore, the black muzzles of a 
group of Rodman guns are disclosed. This is known as the 
Gravelly Cove battery, and contains twelve 15-inch guns. It 
might be denominated by old soldiers as a "masked battery," 
for so near to the water is it, that it cannot be seen until fully 
abreast of it. The guns command the approack by sea through 
the Golden Gate, and sweep the oj^posite shore in their range, 
all the way from Black Point to Point Lobos. 

Two miles further, upon the heights of Lime Point, are 
what are known as the bluff batteries. Here is a line extend- 
ing along the crest of the heights, arranged for the mounting 


of twenty-one 15-inch guns, and twelve mortars of the largest 
size. The j)latforms of the gun-carriages in these batteries are 
of granite, from the Penrhyn quarries, the pintals of some of 
them weighing ten tons each. The magazines, which are built 
of cement, are capable of storing large quantities of ammuni- 
tion. The guns from these batteries have a very extended 
Tange, commanding the entrance from the Golden Gate, and 
sweeping from Point Bonita, on the extreme right, to Point 
Xobos, and along the opposite shore to the city front, and the 
xjhannel between Alcatraz and the city. Below these batteries, 
on the shore, is the wharf, at which the material and supplies 
are landed. Directly back of it, on the sloping hillside, are 
the quarters of the laborers employed upon the works. 

Half a mile beyond the dock, is Point Cavallo, where there 
is a battery of six 15-inch guns. One hundred yards further 
on, upon the high ground, is Cavallo battery. This is the 
most elaborate of all the earthworks in the scheme of San 
Prancisco's harbor defense. The batteiy is after the general 
style of those at Fort Point, with the addition of a number of 
covered ways and a small redoubt, which could be used to 
Tesist an infantry attack from the land side. The center sa- 
lient, protected by bonnets, contains a 20-inch gun. The bat- 
tery contains besides, fifteen 15-inch guns, and a number of 


Decidedly the most formidable and imposing position, when 
Tiewed from the water, is Alcatraz. Situated upon an island 
of the same name, in mid channel, it is at once the right eye 
and the right arm of the San Francisco fortifications. The 
government early saw the importance of the position, and 
iDegan to fortify it soon after gaining possession of the terri- 
tory, in 1846. Since then vast sums have been expended in 
rendering it as nearly impregnable as joossible. A substantial 
dock was built upon the northerly side, and a covered way to 
the citadel, which was erected uj)on the summit of the island. 
The banks were terraced and trestled with the heaviest ord- 
nance of the day. 

About eight years since, the revolution in artillery and pro- 
jectiles made it necessary to change the system of fortification. 
The engineer accordingly went to work to undo what had been 
done before. Frowning parapets were overthrown, preten- 


tious bastions were demolished, and casemated caponieres were 
converted into powder magazines. 

Under tlie present system, batteries on tlie western side of 
the island have been arranged in three tiers or benches of 
different elevations, mounting 15-inch guns. On the south 
side, and extending around to the east, are earth-work bat- 
teries, Avith transoms and magazine, similar to those at Lime 
Point. At the present time, workmen are engaged in cutting 
down the hill upon which the citadel stands. The removed 
earth is used to enlarge the superficial area. When the east 
wall of the citadel is reached, that stronghold will be de- 
molished, and the level upon which it stands will be reduced 
from 136 feet above the water to 119 feet. On this plane will 
be placed a number of mortars of the largest class. East of 
and under the protection of this height, the sjDace will be used 
for ofiicers' quarters and parade jDurposes. When the plan, 
now in jDrogress, is completed, the island will contain thirteen 
batteries, mounting thirty-six 15-inch guns. 

Alcatraz is used as a military prison by the War Depart- 
ment, and here are sent all soldiers convicted on the Pacific 
Coast for infraction of military law. Their labor is utilized 
on the fortifications, and they are allowed ten cents per day 
therefor. There are generally more than one hundred of 
these prisoners uj)on the island. Among the number are the 
Modoc Indians convicted of participation in the Canby mas- 
sacre, and sentenced to imjDrisonment for life. These ex- 
braves appear to be very well contented, and to rather enjoy 
being fed and clothed, with a roof placed over their heads 
without thought on their part for blankets or " chemuck." 

The pnson is admirably conducted. At the close of the 
day's labor, the prisoners are conducted to their quarters, 
thence to the mess-room, and at tattoo are locked up sep- 
arately for the night. The commandant has provided for 
their use a library and reading-room, to which they have 
access during good behavior. 

The trooj^s stationed upon the island have fitted up a very 
neat little theatre, where the drama is faithfully presented at 
regular intervals. On Sunday, the same room is used as a 
chapel, a reading-desk being placed at one side of the stage. 

This jDost is an extremely isolated one, and were it not for 
the trips, twice each day, of the Quartermaster's steamer. 


McPherson, to and from the city, and a good supply of reading 
matter and plans of amusement, the situation would be un- 
bearable. As it is, it is an open question whether there is 
much choice between the condition of the prisoners and the 
troojis stationed ujDon the island. 

For a long time, a system of rewards has been carried on, 
by which the most obedient soldier, and who is also most 
proficient in drill, is allowed so much extra time when "liberty 
day" comes around; the second and third best on the list 
receiving an aj)proximate amount. It may be imagined that 
such rewards are worth striving for, and as a result excellent 
discipline is insured. The light-house, which crowns the roof 
of the citadel, will remain ujdou the hill when that building is 
removed. There is usually a battalion of artillery stationed 
at Alcatraz. 


Just beyond Meiggs's wharf, on North Beach, is Point San. 
Jose, or Black Point, as it is familiarly called by the citizens. 
Here is an earthwork mounting six 10-inch columbiads, six 
old 42-pounders, rifled, and three 15-inch guns. The channel 
between this point and Alcatraz, is quite narrow, and taken in 
conjunction with that post, it is a place of imjDortance. One 
company of artillery is stationed at Point San Jose. 

Angel Island, situated northwest from Alcatraz, is not forti- 
fied to any considerable extent, but is used as a military depot. 
There is generally a regiment of infantry stationed there. 

The Presidio, which was the seat of civil and military gov- 
ernment, in the days of Spanish rule, is situated between Point 
San Jose and Fort Point. The General of the Army command- 
ing the Department usually makes his headquarters at the 
Presidio. Spacious barracks and comfortable quarters for the 
officers are arranged here. It is a point worth visiting, as 
there are usually several regiments stationed here, and a fine 
parade ground affords an opportunity of witnessing military 
evolutions on quite an extended scale. The Presidio is always 
used by the militia for their review and sham fights upon gala 
days. It was here that the great sham fight occurred on the 
3d of July, 1876, in conjunction with the naval display, when 
a bombardment between the different batteries and men-of-war 
made one of the grandest spectacles ever witnessed in Saa 
Francisco, but which was nevertheless a veritable sham. 


Although the natural advantages for a means of defense are 
superior, this naval engagement proved beyond doubt that 
San Francisco's defensive ability, so far as relates to the en- 
^nes of war and their manipulators, is not great. A single 
one of the more recently-constructed iron-clad war vessels, 
could steam up the channel of the harbor, and open a broad- 
side fire into the heart of the city, without fear of being dis- 
abled by the shot from our most formidable batteries. Big 
guns, and well-drilled gunners, are wanting. 

Yerba Buena, or Goat Island, to obtain possession of which 
the Central Pacific Eailroad made such desperate efforts some 
years since, is situated between the city of San Francisco and 
Oakland. It is used as a depot for quartermaster's stores. A 
lighthouse and steam whistle are located upon it. 

QUACKS. 443 





THERE is perhaps no city under the sun that bears so 
great a burden of charlatanry in medicine, in propor- 
tion to the population, as San Francisco. It is strange, too, 
when consideration is given to the fact that the most dreaded 
diseases are not so prevalent among the people as in many 
other localities. Yet "doctors" are so numerous as to lead a 
stranger to believe that disease is here enthroned, and ruling 
•with despotic hand. 

It would be hard to enumerate the vile preparations and 
filthy nostrums that have been pressed upon the public 
throughout the United States as "wonderful Calif ornian dis- 
coveries." The attractiveness of the word California to the 
ordinary Eastern person, has been remunerative caj)ital to 
quacks who were shrewd enough in business to embody it in 
the name of their "medicinal" j3 reparations. There is seldom 
found an instance of more rajoidly attained popularity than is 
furnished in "Dr. Walker's Vinegar Bitters" — a compound of 
the most nauseating and disgusting ingredients, yet a "Cali- 
FORNiAN vegetable preparation, possessing remarkably curative 

There is no subject that people are more credulous concern- 
ing than disease. It seems to be the one weakness of intel- 
ligent beings. Instinct has fixed laws, but reason admits 
of much warping. The study of man's physical nature reveals 
many apparent weaknesses, and all that is necessary to develop 
the slightest imperfection into a monstrous deformity, is to 
go before him with a show of medical knowledge, and attack 
this tender part. And this is the stronghold of quackery in 

It is not the ignorant alone that give credence to the quack's 


■warnings, but the most intelligent, refined, and wealthy, are 
alike deluded by his suggestive utterances. Yet it must b© 
chargeable to ignorance, after all, for even among the better 
educated persons, few are found that have any great practical 
knowledge of the laws of health. Our common public school* 
are defective in this regard. Anatomy and hygiene may con- 
stitute a part of the regular course, after many other studies, 
of less importance have been mastered, but even then the 
knowledge gained from the accepted style of teaching these 
branches, is only a smattering, and of little practical A'^alue. 
It is left entirely to the student who desires to become a prac- 
tising physician, and in no wise concerns those who will doubt- 
less be his patients. If sufficient attention were given to this 
part of education, quackery would soon disappear, and the 
physician would be greatly superior to what he is to-day — 
otherwise his profession would not yield him support. 


Quacks, as a rule, do not engage in the general practise of 
medicine. They choose some particular disease (of a jDreva- 
lent character generally) to which they devote "especial" atten- 
tion. The eye, ear, throat, lungs, kidneys, and nasal organs^ 
are favorite studies for tlie charlatan. There are more "infal- 
lible" remedies for rheumatism and catarrh, jDrescribed by 
quacks, or sold on the streets in San Francisco, than would 
be necessary to entirely root out the germs of these trouble- 
some ailments, and forever bar their propagation; yet there is 
still heard much disagreeable "hawking," and lame backs and 
sore joints are not unheard-of complaints. 

These two diseases are the capital of members of the quack 
fraternity in San Francisco. The damp chill air that prevails, 
a great part of the time, tends to superinduce them. There 
are no common diseases more annoying than these, and none 
perhaps requiring more patient and regular treatment to eradi- 
cate them from the system. Hence, those who are thus af- 
flicted, are all the time on the lookout, as it were, to discover 
some efficient and simple remedy. No matter how absurd the 
mode of treatment may be, they will at least "give it a trial," 
if great results are claimed to follow. 

The quacks, therefore, play their cards well, when they work 
on the credulity of this class of sufferers. It is with a show 

QUACKS. 445 

of sound logic that tliey assume to devote their attention to 
some special disease. For in the practise of medicine, it is 
xeasonable that he who concentrates his powers on a single 
disease, can more fully comprehend it, than he whose re- 
searches extend over the whole catalogue of maladies and 
their remedies. This forms the basis of their reasonings, and 
is wonderfully effective in winning remunerative patronage. 

If this priucii^le of concentration were adopted by the consci- 
encious medical student, it would be very well. Tet he who 
"would cure our ills, must first be able to name them ; and to 
attain this knowledge, he must have a thorough understanding 
of man's j)hysical natui'e. But in acquiring this, he has like- 
wise fitted himself for a wider practise than that adopted by 
the "specialist." 

The richest harvest, however, for the quack, is found in the 
special treatment of disreputable diseases. In this line of prac- 
tise there is perfect security from exposure, no matter how un- 
successful he may be; for the victim of vicious dissipation will 
not compromise his own reputation by exposing any malprac- 
tice of his " physician." Thus the most unj)rincipled and ig- 
norant person may remain in the community, bearing the title 
and reputation of a successful and honorable physician, with 
no fear of being openly denounced for his villainy. 


To be a successful quack, it is necessary to pay for a free use 
of printer's type and ink, in circulars, pamphlets, and posters, 
as well as in the columns of the newspapers. But, as a rule, 
the medical impostor is too ignorant to jDrepare the matter for 
his advertisements, and therefore must employ some one to 
conduct this department for him. There are any number of 
"broken-down "literary men," whose style of composition and 
thought is apparently just the proper thing for the quack adver- 
tisements, and who will sell their talent for a glass of grog. 
Educated, though unsuccessful doctors, often prostitute their 
abilities by performing this service. These latter are preferred 
in this department, as their professional knowledge is sure to 
<5rop out in the matter they prepare, and give to the advertise- 
ment the desired technical caste. 

There is nothing more demoralizing to the youth than the 
quack literature that is strewn broadcast over the land. On 


the street corner there is posted a boy, dealing out these vice- 
breeding circulars to every passer-by. They flutter from lamp 
posts in the more frequented parts of the city. They are qui- 
etly dropijed into private carriages, and slyly slipped under the 
front door of residences. Newspapers of every character con- 
tain column after column of testimonials — some, no doubt, 
valid, having been given in good faith by weak-minded hospi- 
tal jDatients, but the greater number proceeding from the brain 
of adroit liars. 

"Lectures to the Unfortunate," "A Sufferer's Experience," 
" Cure for Youthful Indiscretions," "Young Men, Take Warn- 
ing," "Let the Afflicted Read," and all such suggestive titles, 
are displayed in flaming headlines in newspapers that profess 
to be the chief educators of the people. Then follows pev- 
haps a column of reading matter, couched in such language 
as to not be too shocking to decency, yet by inference sug- 
gesting the vilest obscenity. Even religious and literary 
journals many times lend encouragement to this evil by allow- 
ing such advertisements space on their pages. 

The San Francisco Neivs Letter, a weekly paper, devoted 
principally to advertising, though a very newsy sheet, some- 
time since instituted a raid on the quacks of the city, that 
created considerable consternation in the fraternity. It keeps 
a standing list of from two hundred to four hundred names of 
men and women who profess to be physicians, but who either 
have not diplomas or refuse to show them. The list is headed 
with a black print of a skull and bones, under which the very 
pertinent query stands boldly out: "Gentlemen, you call 
yourselves doctors. Have you a diploma?" Whatever may be 
the motive of this paper, it is very evident that some good has 
resulted from this action, in calling public attention to the 
existence of so many impostors, if in nothing else. 


From a paper read by Dr. Henry Gibbons, before the Cali- 
fornia State Medical Society, the following extracts are taken. 
They show that financial success has attended some of the 
most illiterate persons who have resorted to the practise of 
quackery for a livelihood : 

"Old Calif ornians will remember 'Doctor Young,' the 
pioneer quack of the Pacific Coast. He was an upholsterer, 

QUACKS. 447 

and nothing more, until his sudden transformation into a 
doctor, which required but a single night. He flashed into 
fame and into business through the institution which gradu- 
ates nearly all the quacks in the world — the newspaper press. 

"There was a vein of honesty in Young's character. Keal- 
izing his own inability to treat disease, he prescribed by 
proxy. Of this I was first apprised by the following incident. 
Being called in consultation, in the case of a sick child, late in 
the evening, it became necessary to appoint an hour for an- 
other meeting with the attending physician, on the day follow- 
ing. That gentleman was a well-educated medical man, but 
unfortunately he had been ensnared and shorn of his locks 
by the Circe of our profession. He could meet me only be- 
fore eight in the morning, and after sis in the evening. I 
was much surprised by this announcement, until he explained 
the reason. 'I am ashamed to own it,' said he, 'but I am 
in the service of Dr. Young. I have a family, and I could 
not see them starve. My professional pride is humbled by 
the position, but the case is one of necessity. Young never 
prescribes for his patients. He sits at the desk in the recep- 
tion room, and arranges and receives the fees, and then refers 
them to me, in the private office. I jDass for the doctor, and 
Young for my clerk. He pays me $250 a month, and my 
time is his exclusively from 8 a. m. till 6 p. m. ' 

"Both these individuals have long since gone to their 
graves. But 'Doctor Young's Institute' still lives, and his 
name is still employed to attract persons who are fond of 
certain flavors. 

"Our people have not forgotten the 'King of Pain,' who 
dashed through the State in a splendid vehicle, with six white 
horses, scattering like autumn leaves his advertisements of 
aconite liniment, the virtue of which he had grown acquainted 
with by some accident. His knowledge of the materia medica 
was bounded by this one article; but he was an expert card- 
player, and invested in gambling the proceeds of his specula- 
tion in human credulity. He traveled very fast, and came to a 
miserable end, through a greater ' pain killer ' than aconite. 

" In California, as in all other parts of the world, there are 
' Worm Doctors. ' Some man of stomach becomes a victim of 
parasites, and is made acquainted through a medical prescrip- 
tion with the virtues of Male Fern — the insecticide mostly em- 


j)loyed by tliese worm-killers. Forthwith he gathers up all 
the tapeworms and other entozoic prodigies he can find, displays 
them in his window, and talks and writes tapeworm, knowing 
that a large percentage of men and women, who see and read, 
will be converted, and will come for his medicines. On this 
hobby has many a perfect ignoramus crawled into celebrity and 

" There is an old story of two fellows who embarked in a 
sjDeculation in itch-ointment. One of them had the disease, 
and traveled through the country shaking hands most affection- 
ately with everybody. The other, who had the ointment, fol- 
lowed in a week or two selling the cui-e." 

Li Po Tai, ' ' the herculean Chinese doctor, is the prince of 
quacks and high priest of charlatans." He has amassed a for- 
tune, and with due respect to his heathen religion, has built a 
Joss house, wherein he may join with his celestial brethren in 
worshiping his favorite deity. Among his patrons are persons 
of every nationality, who go to consult him as to the nature of 
their affliction. According to his diagnosis, the liver is respon- 
sible for every ailment. " His medicines are so vile; so abhor- 
rent to taste and smell, as to make one pause to consider which 
of the two evils is the greater, death or Dr. Li Po Tai." 







THE hotel is the San Franciscan's home. A man of do- 
mestic habits is a rarity; and women have come to regard 
family cares and duties as a sort of drudgery without their 
j^rovince. It is the fashion ; and Fashion's laws are absolute. 

To occupy ' ' elegant apartments " at any of the aristocratic 
hotels in San Francisco, is to command a position from which 
you can overlook the whole line of fortifications that the elite 
have thrown up about them. You have attacked the weakest 
point, a detour in a " coach-and-f our " — a glitter of gold and 
a flash of jewels, as a sort of skirmish movement, will speedily 
bring truce. 

Gotham set the example in this hotel living. Chicago and 
St. Louis quickly followed; but San Francisco, not content 
to follow in the rear, withdrew apace, and at a single step out- 
stripped them all. The earth may indulge in threatening 
shakes, and fires lick up adjacent blocks ; but so attached are 
San Franciscans to hotel life, that "let come what may come," 
they will not forego its attractions. 

There are more than a hundred hotels in San Francisco, all 
told, and to include boarding-houses — many of which are large 
and commodious, and some extremely "high-toned" — lodging- 
houses and restaurants, the number is swelled to over a thou- 
sand. Besides these, there are innumerable "rooms to let," 
by private families, who, for company, or to reduce rent bills, 
take a few lodgers, and in some instances, boarders also. The 
hotel and boarding-house capacity would be almost sufficient, 
in case of emergency, to accommodate the entire population. 


Those hotels that are " strictly first-class," as the traveling 
public understands the term, are limited to a small number ; 


but as to elegant and comfortable accommodations, they stand 

The Palace and the Baldwin (to each of which a sei)arate 
chapter is devoted in this volume), the Grand, Lick, Occi- 
dental, and Cosmopolitan, are the delight of the tourist ; for 
certainly he can nowhere be better "housed" than in one of 
these. These are all centrally located, and from their near- 
ness to each other lead one to supjoose that there is some- 
where close by a particular, coveted spot, that each had tried 
to occupy. 

The Grand Hotel was, until the shadow of the Palace fell 
upon it, the largest and best arranged in the city. It is three 
stories high, with a mansard roof, and contains four hundred 
rooms. It has all the modern conveniences, and is elegantly 
furnished throughout. The bar-room is said to be the finest 
on the coast. The Grand, however, is not as popular as some 
of the longer established hotels. 

The Lick House has enjoyed a wide popularity — perhaps 
more on account of its splendid dining hall than for any other 
superiority. The artistic design and exquisite finish of this 
room is not surpassed in the United States, and it no doubt 
rivals in real substantial elegance anything of its character in 
the world. 

The Lick House was built by James Lick, California's great 
philanthropist, and received its name in his honor. 

The bar-room of the Lick House is the grand rallying place 
of the turf sports of the city and coast. For a few days previ- 
ous to a gTeat race, one can hear more " horse talk " in the bar- 
room, office and parlors of this hotel than the uninitiated citi- 
zen can digest diu'ing the whole sporting season. Pool-selling 
is also conducted here, which upon the evening previous to a 
race, furnishes a most exciting exhibition of "legitimate" 
gambling. It affords a fine opportunity for the moralist to 
study character for future illustrations. 

The Occidental is really the popular first-class hotel. Many 
of the California Street speculators luxuriate there; capitalists, 
lawyers "up in the profession," with large incomes; wealthy, 
retired merchants, favorite employees with large salaries, rich 
widows, and " ladies " and "gentlemen," are among the resi- 
dent guests. The hotel is large and conveniently arranged, and 
is furnished in great elegance. 


The Cosmopolitan is more modest-appearing, and lias not so 
much of the society ton as the Occidental, yet it reposes on an 
eleg-ant dignity, yery much in accord with the tastes of gentle- 
men inclined to the old school stj'le. It would jDcrhaps take 
higher society rank in St. Louis or Baltimore, than it occupies 
in San Francisco. A residence at the Cosmopolitan, however, 
does not detract from one's reputation, but rather indicates a 
retiring disposition. 


' ' Second class " hotels are more universally popular than 
their superior kinsmen, inasmuch as the mediocre in society, 
as in wealth or possessions, are the more numerous. 

Of these, the Brooklyn, Buss, American Exchange, and Mor- 
ton, are most widely known. The Brooklyn and Buss are per- 
haps the choice, yet, as for accommodations, a blind man would 
doubtless fail to detect a difference. The majority of the travel- 
ing public stop at these hotels, and although they rank as sec- 
ond best in San Francisco, they are superior in many respects 
to some of the "first class" houses in Eastern cities. They 
have all the conveniences of suites, baths, reading-rooms, hotel 
coaches, etc., that the better houses maintain, only lacking in 
much that aj)plies to the aesthetic tastes — elegant mirrors, rich 
furniture, and various ornamentation that is for " effect" more 
than for use. 

The new Commercial Hotel, recently opened, will no doubt 
soon become a popular resort, as it offers good accommodations 
at veiy moderate prices. 

All these hotels are " down town;" that is, in the business 
part of the city, convenient to all the lines of travel. 


There are hotels both good and bad, kept by foreigners of 
all nationalities. Even the "Heathen Chinee," when he first 
tries his cork-soled shoe on " Melican soilee," may be con- 
ducted to the topmost berth in a fifth-story, where he will be 
served with "birds-nest soup" and " fricaseed puppies," so 
delicious to his heathen palate, or he may retire to the dusky 
habitation of his poorer brother, in the gloom of a filthy base- 
ment, and feast on his insipid " licee." 

The Germans, French, Italians, Spanish, all have their 
favorite hotels, none of which, however, compete in excel- 
lence with the American houses. 


The What Cheer House is a sort of hotel specialty, 
being for males only. It might be called the poor man's 
hotel, as the arrangement and surroundings betoken poverty. 
It, however, is comfortable and neat, being superior to what 
might be expected, consideiing the low charges that obtain. 
It is perhaps better patronized than any hotel in the city, 
being constantly thronged with unfortunate laborers, and all 
classes of impecunious persons. There are necessarily many 
rough and vicious fellows among its patrons, but the discipline 
is strict, and seldom any disturbance results from their pres- 

Some of the up-town boarding-houses rival in elegance the 
best hotels, though, as a rule, to live at a boarding-house is 
to be on the social decline, requiring only a little push to send 
you down the grade. 

The Baldwin Hotel has taken the lead in getting away from 
the business center, and if it proves a success (of which there 
is no doubt, if it continues under the management of its pro- 
prietor), others will follow; and the emulation resulting will 
tend to lead other improvements in the same direction, and 
Kearny and Montgomery streets, will be only a pair in the 
dozens of fashionable thoroughfares. 








THE history of a great newspaper is always of interest. 
Not only because it is a reliable record of the public 
pulse, and a reflection of the past, but because it lies so close 
to the popular heart, and is so thoroughly identified with the 
rise and progress of a community in which the newspaper is 

The history of the San Francisco Chronicle shows that its 
growth has been parallel to the advancement of the city and 
State that have princij)ally sustained it. Sometimes it has even 
outstripped the nimble foot of progress, and proved itself the 
avant courier of blessings yet to come. 


It was on the morning of the 16th of January, 1865, that 
the precocious journalistic infant, known as the Daily Dra- 
matic Chronicle, made its first appearance, and was tossed into 
the doors of the principal stores, hotels, and places of amuse- 
ment, in the shape of a neat little folio sheet, 14 X 20 inches, 
containing 16 columns, and claiming to be, as its title modestly 
asserted, "the abstract and brief chronicle of the times — - 
local, critical, musical, and theatrical." It was very modestly 
started, and Mr. Charles De Young, its founder, thus tells the 

"I was but a boy in years when I returned to San Francisco, 
in 1864, disgusted with my adventures in the mountains. 
But I had 'roughed it' enough to gain some experience. I 
determined to start here a gratuitous theatrical paper, like 


one I had published in Sacramento, and call it the Dramatic 
Chronicle; but I hadn't a dollar in the world. I got credit at 
a job office for the use of room, type, press, and for paper, by 
promising to pay at the end of a week. Then came the strug- 
gle, lu the day time, I sohcited advertisements, and at night, 
•with the helx) of a young fellow, I set up the type. In this 
way, I worked five days to get the fij-st edition ready for the 
press, and in the whole time slept not more than thirteen 
hours, and that on the floor of the office, on jDapers. T\"ell, 
I was exhausted by the strain. I would often go to sleep at 
the case M'ith the composing stick in my hand, and be awak- 
ened by the rattle of the 'pied' type on the floor. I had 
borrowed five dollars to live on during the first week, and 
with a portion of it purchased a quantity of strong black 
coffee, and kept awake by drinking it. The exhaustion nearly 
caused what would have been to me then a great disaster. 
The form was ready for printing, and I was holding it up, 
while my only assistant was underlaying lines of display type. 
I grew so faint that I staggered, and the form was saved from 
falling into ' pi ' by the boy. When the forms were ready for 
the press, I was hardly able to feed the sheets to the ma- 
chine. But at the end of a week, I began to feel encouraged. 
The payments of bills by advertisers enabled me to pay the 
expenses, and I breathed a little freer." 

From this embryo has sprung the San Francisco Chronicle 
of to-day. There was nothing at the outset to proclaim the 
infant of more than ordinary promise. On the contrary, its 
birth was an obscure and labored one. It was the offspring of 
hard mental and manual toil — the literal "sweat of the brow" 
of its one proprietor, publisher, and editor, who for many 
days had denied himself necessary food, and even the refresh- 
ment of sufficient sleep, in order that the infant might make 
a creditable appearance. The little paper was attractive. Its 
news was fresh, its editorial paragrajjhs crisj), and even its 
advertisements were readable. The public asked and cared 
for nothing more. It was generally known that there was no 
capital behind it; no revenue beyond the advertising bills col- 
lected at the end of the week, and the courage of its pro- 
prietor; for the little stranger was distributed gratuitously. 
"When it was but twenty-five days old, it apparently disposed 
of the question of life or death, by ajDpearing in an enlarged 


form, an extra column to each page, and a more attractive and 
"business-like make-up. 

So the enterprise prospered till the close of the first six 
months, when, in an editorial entitled "our second volume," 
the proprietoi^ remarked : "Though not dissatisfied with what 
we have already achieved, we have by no means attained to 
the height of our aspirations. Indeed, should we frankly de- 
clare in their full scope, the objects at which we aim, and 
clearly indicate the goal of our ambition, the statement might 
sound like a childish boast, and provoke the laughter of those 
who would look upon it as an overweening, instead of a just, 
reasonable, and honest ambition." 

Again, on the 1st of December, 1865, near the close of the 
first year, the more pretentious journals of the city, nettled 
evidently by the superior spirit of the little stranger, and the 
fact that it was bou.nd to live, began to tauntingly refer to it 
as "a gratuitous little advertising sheet." In a crisp editorial, 
the Chronicle replied: " The epithet is just. The Chronicle 
is gratuitous; it is little, and it is an advertising sheet; but it 
is a success. Unlike some of our contemporaries, it was started 
without subsidies, or extraneous aid of any kind, and it has 
paid from the start. We are of opiuion, that all journalistic 
enterprises that ever come to anything, commence humbly, 
and grow with a natural and healthy growth. In this way 
have all journalistic successes been achieved, and in this way 
does the Chronicle aim at influence and prosperity. We expect 
to labor and to wait; but we expect also to reap an ample re- 
ward for our labor, and we flatter ourselves that we are not 
destined to wait in vain. Meantime, if any skeptical-minded 
individual has no faith in our attaining to the lofty goal of our 
ambition, we just ask said individual to wait awhile and take 
a note of our progress. We are as big and as dignified as our 
neighbors were some ten years ago. We do not expect to 
stand still for the next ten years. In short, we appeal to the 
year 1877." Those words were strangely prophetic. Their 
fulfillment is realized already in the Chronicle of to-day — a 
journal almost world-wide in its circulation, and powerful in 
its influence. 

During the first year of the publication of the Dramatic 
Chronicle, it began to show that spirit of freedom and inde- 
pendence w-hich has always characterized its policy, and which 


at tlie time, brouglit trouble to its doors. The Dramatic Chron- 
icle was what its name indicated, the "house bill" and adver- 
tising sheet of the different theatres, and daily published the 
evening- programmes. Notwithstanding this was the mainstay 
of its advertising patronage, the Chronicle criticized the thea- 
ters, managers, actors, and actresses, as honestly and as fear- 
lessly as though it was not dependent upon them for a dollar 
of revenue. So fair, impartial, and just were these criticisms, 
and so obviously written in the interest of the public, instead 
of the theatrical managers, that the theater-goers accepted the 
Chronicle as a prompter, to praise or censure the actors and 
actresses who appeared on the San Francisco stage. This bold 
course, however, often proved objectionable to the managers 
of the different theaters, and, as a consequence, the little jour- 
nal often found itself without the theatrical advertisements. 
Still, it lived and thrived without ever making any compro- 
mise of its principles, or bartering away its opinions. The 
public became its supporters. People were always glad to 
read its racy paragraphs and curt criticisms. Merchants gave 
it their advertising patronage, for great care had been taken 
to give the pajDer a bona fide and lasting circulation. Eveiy 
evening, after the audience had left the different places of 
amusement, the janitors of the buildings gathered together 
the papers left in the seats, and sent them to the publication 
office of the Chronicle, from whence they were forwarded by 
mail to the principal hotels and business places on the Pacific 
Coast. This gave the paper a double circulation, without 
much extra expense to the publishers, and yet was of great 
value to advertisers. The persistency in keeping it before the 
eyes of the public, together with its general attractiveness, soon 
brought the Dramatic Chronicle an enviable reputation. Its 
receipts from advertising patronage during the first year, was 
something over $2,000 per month, and as fast as the money 
was made it was ajDplied to the improvement of the paper. 
Progression was the daily inspiration. 

Instead of discussing matters theatrical exclusively, the 
Chronicle began to deal with all matters of public concern, in 
so candid and independent a manner, that it attracted much 
attention, and won for itself many friends. 

In March, 1867, the increase of business compelled an 
enlargement, so as to gain three additional columns. The 


first issue of the enlarged sheet contained an editorial declar- 
ing the intention of the proprietors ' ' to make the Chronicle as 
big as the Alta, if the public good demanded it." 

Thus, month by month, the journal grew in usefulness, 
dignity and prosperity. The range of its criticisms gradually 
extended to all jDolitical, moral and social questions, and its 
editorials were just as good, and just as effective, as though 
the paper had not been given away. Moreover, it began to 
compete with the old established papers for the freshest and 
most reliable news. Notably was this the case in the 
Chandler-Harris prize fight. At that time many of the 
citizens were directly or indirectly interested in the meeting 
of these pugilists. The rej)orters of the different evening 
papers had laid the most complete plans to get the first report 
of the fight. The Dramatic Chronicle, notwithstanding its 
circulation was gratuitous, determined to beat them all. It 
was announced that the fight would take place in San Mateo 
County, but when the designated place was reached, the sheriff 
of the county forbade the fight, and the "professors of the 
manly art," their backers, friends, and the indiscriminate 
crowd, all came back to the city. A secret consultation Avas 
held, and a decision arrived at, that the ring should be pitched 
somewhare on the Contra Costa side of the Bay, and that the 
time and place of leaving the city should be kept secret. As 
soon as the Chronicle learned this, the fastest yacht on the 
Bay was chartered to go to the scene of the fight, and return 
with the first installment of the news. A telegraph constructor 
and an operator were also taken along, with permission from 
the telegraph company to tap the wires, should the fight take 
place near the line. But all these preparations, curiously 
enough, proved useless. The day was perfectly calm, and the 
"fast yacht" did not reach the scene of the fight until long 
after it was over. But other agencies for securing the news 
were more successful. The ring was formed eight miles 
above Oakland, where there was no telegraph line to tap, and 
the men brought along for that purpose were seemingly use- 
less. As soon as the situation was taken in, the reporters 
began to hire all the farmers' horses in the neighborhood, 
to bear the couriers to the telegraph station at Oakland. 
The Chronicle was the first to secure a horse, and instead 
of waiting till the fight had begun, the telegraph operator 


mounted the steed secured, a report of the preliminary 
proceedings of the fight and a copy of Youatt on the Horse 
was given him, and he was instructed to reach, and take 
jjossession of, the Oakland telegraph station and hold the 
■wires, if it cost the life of the horse. This first courier 
succeeded in getting away without being noticed. Mean- 
time, the ring had been pitched, and the fight began. After 
the third round, the Chronicle reporter near the ropes passed 
his notes over the heads of the crowd to the second courier, 
•who was off in a twinkling. This movement was not noticed 
by the reporters for the other papers, who likewise had 
couriers mounted, ready to start as soon as they could get the 
notes through the dense crowd. At the end of the seventh 
round, the whole troop were off for Oakland with dispatches, 
but imagine their consternation when they found the ojDcr- 
ator telegraphing whole pages of Youatt on the Horse with 
dispatches of the prize-fight interpolated, as fast as they 
arrived. The little dramatic "free sheet" had control of 
the wires in Oakland; and across the bay in San Francisco, 
in front of the Chronicle office, was gathered a restless crowd, 
eager to learn the tidings. No other paper, thus far, had 
a line. In addition to the news on the bulletin board, an 
extra edition of the paper was issued, containing a full 
account of the fight, six thousand copies of which were sold 
within two hours. This was the Chronicle's first great 
achievement in gathering news, and it showed such enterprise 
that it was observed by all. 

Again, the Dramatic Chronicle was the first paper to publish 
full accounts of the assassination of President Lincoln, and 
give the details of the exciting events that followed. The 
j)ress was kept i-unning all day, and the papers given away 
as fast as the ribbons could bring them from the groaning 


These strokes of enterprise, and the manner in which they 
were received by the public, determined the managers of the 
Chronicle to turn their little journal into a regular accredited 
newspaj)er, to be sold, like its rivals, by subscription. They 
saw that there was a field for it. They announced that it was 
their intention to publish what would prove a novelty in San 
Francisco journalism — a bold, spicy, bright, fearless, and truly 
independent newspaper. 


Accordingly, on the 1st day of September, 1868, the Dra- 
matic Chronicle was supplanted by a fine - looking daily j)aper, 
of seven columns, filled with an abundance of fresh news. 
Instead of the Dramatic Chronicle, the infant " of a larger 
growth" was now the Daily Morning Chronicle. In the lead- 
ing editorial of this first issue, appeared the following, as in- 
dicative of the policy which the new journal would p)ursue : 

"We shall support no party, no clique, no faction. "What- 
ever interest we may take in elections or candidates, whether 
for the Presidency, or the Board of Supervisors, will not be a 
political interest. No bank, nor railroad, nor ring, nor mon- 
eyed interest, will have the power either to inspire or to restrain 
our utterances. We consider ourselves retained in the cause 
of the great genefal public, and shall have no private clients 
nor friends to serve. Neither the Republican party, nor the 
Democratic party, nor the Pacific Railroad, nor the Bank of 
California, are great enough to frighten us, or rich enough to 
buy us. 'We shall be independent in all things — neutral in 
nothing.' We shall assail with all our power, and with every 
legitimate weapon, all p)rinciples, measures, doctrines, parties, 
and cliques, that we regard as exercising an influence hostile 
to the best interests of society." 

With this frank exposition of the sentiments and the policy 
which had sustained it in the past, and by which it was to be 
guided in the future, the Chronicle entered upon a new era 
of existence. From this point, its onward march was even 
more rapid and noticeable than before. The little "seven-by- 
nine sheet," written and set up by the work of one hand, and 
run off on a hired press, was now a power in the land, with an 
establishment, a character, and a standing of its own. 

On Tuesday, April 19, 1870, the Chronicle was enlarged one 
column on each page, and the announcement made by the pro- 
prietors "that they were determined to spare no expense nor 
pains to keep it foremost in the ranks of live newspajoers in the 
United States; with the Pacific Coast as a specialty." 

About this time, the press facilities of the establishment were 
found inadequate to supply the increasing circulation, and ar- 
rangements were at once made with Robert Hoe & Co., of New 
York, to build a four-cylinder press, cajDable of throwing off an 
edition of 12,000 copies per hour. On the 16th of December, 
1872, this complicated piece of mechanism, with the attendant 


folding-machines, was first put in motion, and the lightning- 
rapidity with which it did its work apparently solved the ques- 
tion of mere printing facilities. 

But with these increased facilities, and the lengthening out 
of the columns of the paper, came a tidal wave of prosperity, 
which taxed the capacity of every department to the utmost. 
SubscrijDtions came pouring in from far and wide. The paper 
was put in a new dress; new business departments were organ- 
ized; the editorial and reportorial departments strengthened 
and improved ; and no effort was spared to make the paper 
more attractive than ever. The result of this course soon be- 
came apparent. In less than six months the business agaiu 
began to encroach upon the resources of the establishment. 
The new press, although driven to its full ^3eed, was unable 
to meet the tax on its energies. It could not print the edi- 
tion within the time limited. The edition grew so rapidly that 
each succeeding morning the great machine finished its task 
later and later. The proprietors, after some reflection, resolved 
to incur still greater expense, and increase the facilities of the 
establishment twofold. 

On the 15th of June, 1873, the business of the paper com- 
pelled an enlargement, by again lengthening the columns. In. 
October, of the same year, machinery and material were pur- 
chased, a corps of artisans brought out from New York, and in. 
six weeks from the time the announcement was first made, a 
stereotype foundry was in full blast in the rear of the Chronicle 
press-rooms. By this j)rocess the capacity of the press was 
doubled, enabling the printing of two copies of the paper at 
once — and again the press was ahead. But not long. 

The increased facilities, spurred on the proprietors to cor- 
respondingly increase the cu-culation ; and they went about it 
in such a way that their designs were fully carried out. The 
plan — that of furnishing maps of the United States and Pacific 
Coast to each subscriber — proved such a perfect success, that 
when a controversy arose over the awarding of the contract for 
the city printing, and a committee of citizens were appointed 
to investigate and report as to which paper had the largest cir- 
culation, the Chronicle was awarded the contract, in obedience 
to the verdict of the committee — " that it had the largest circu- 
lation of any paper on the coast." 

On the 1st of June, 1874, the first number of the Weekly 


■Chronicle was issued. It was a quarto sheet of 64 columns, 
well edited, and gave a complete record of the news of the 
week, with instructive editorials. Its success was immediate. 

November 23, 1874, the daily was enlarged from eight to 
nine columns to the page; and August 23, 1875, the paper was 
enlarged so as to give three additional columns, besides ap- 
jpearing in an entirely new dress, made expressly'- for it. 

The Chronicle's persistent enterprise was recently exempli- 
fied by the successful fight it made against the news monopoly 
known as the California Press Association. The journals 
composing this association were, the Bulletin and Call, San 
Prancisco; and the Record, Sacramento. These newspapers, 
by reason of the character of the organization, had special 
privileges granted them in the matter of telegraphic news, by 
the parent news association in New York. Every other jour- 
nal on the Pacific Coast had either to copy the telegraphic 
news from the journals comprising the California Press Asso- 
ciation, or secure it from the telegraph companies at exorbi- 
tant prices. This, therefore, gave the members of the Asso- 
ciation a prestige that has proved disastrous to more than one 
San Francisco journal. 

A number of years ago the Times of San Francisco under- 
took to break the monopoly, but soon failed in the effort, and 
finally ceased to exist. The Herald followed in the attempt, 
and met with a similar fate. The Chronicle next took up the 
war club, with no more hope of success, apparently, than its 
predecessors had. It fought quietly for a long time, though 
with persistent earnestness, and finally, on the 27th of June, 
1876, almost startled its readers and contemporaries by an- 
nouncing in an editorial that it had been victorious; giving 
as a proof of its assertion several columns of fresh telegraphic 
news from all parts of the world. 

This contest for a share in the benefits of the great news- 
gathering association in New York, no doubt requiring a large 
expenditure of capital to prosecu.te it successfully, justly en- 
titles the Chronicle to the name it has sometimes applied to 
itself — the "Herald of the Pacific Coast." 

The Chronicle is now in its twelfth year from the start, and 
its eighth, as a daily morning paper. The secret of its extra- 
ordinary success is easily explained